IAF chief's visit to China not called off: A K Antony


Hindon (UP), Sept 2: Defence Minister A K Antony on Monday made it clear that the IAF chief's planned visit to China has not been called off amid indications that the schedule is now expected to be reworked.

It is "not correct. The IAF chief is going wherever he is invited and as per his wishes. He accepts invitations and goes... All other things are speculation.

Whenever he is invited by any friendly country and he accepts, he is free to go," he told reporters here after the formal induction of C-17 heavy-lift transport aircraft into the IAF.

The Minister was replying to question on reports that the government had cancelled Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne's proposed visit to China in September-October.

Sources said the government was earlier not planning to approve the visit of Browne to China this year but indicated that the visit schedule may now be reworked.

Sources said the govt was not planning to approve IAF chief's China visit.

The trip was proposed in IAF chief's annual foreign visit schedule but the final clearance from the authorities and the Ministry concerned have not yet been given, they said.

They said it was felt that the IAF chief's trip should not be approved due to the lack of reciprocal high-level visits by the Chinese side to India.


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