New Delhi, Dec 11: Reports suggest that the Indian Air Force on Wednesday, Dec 10 has been asked to raise its readiness to war-time alerts. The current readiness level is 'Passive Air Defence' which is just one step short of the posture for launching offensive strikes across the boundary. It is learnt that IAF has also cancelled the leaves of its top officials.
These measures are taken in the wake of an intelligence alert about the high-possiblity of a 9/11-type terror attack from the air possibly from the neighbouring states. This can also be viewed as a precautionary measure as tensions are brimming between India and Pakistan after the Nov 26 Mumbai terror attacks. However, no troops have been committed on the ground.
Indian military leadership is relying heavly on air strikes as a punitive instrument, if India is compelled to take military action. "No other military power has the kind of flexibility that air power provides. Firstly, we can react in a very short time. We can strike deep. You can choose your target. You can stop it just 30 seconds to bomb delivery," said Rtd. Air Chief Marshal SP Tyagi.
However the defence sources say that the current alert levels are only a defensive response to the heightened threat of an air attack on India. There are also reports of increased patrolling by India in the Arabian Sea. It was during the Operation Parakram in 2002 that Indian Armed Forces were seen so alert. The only difference now is that no troops have been mobilized on the ground yet.
OneIndia News (With inputs from Agencies)