Growth of Chinese army being watched: IAF | india | Hindustan Times
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Growth of Chinese army being watched: IAF

india Updated: Jan 13, 2007 06:21 IST

The Indian Air Force on Friday said the constant growth of the army in neighbouring China was being watched in the interest of the nation, but ruled out threat from any country.

"We will certainly watch the growth of the Chinese army. It will be of interest to us," Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal SP Tyagi told reporters in Chandigarh.

"Military leaders don't look at intentions, they look on capabilities," he said.

He however said India's relations with China was "considerably improving".

Tyagi, who was at the 12 wing Air Force station in connection with a seminar on Air Power in the Himalayas to be held by Centre of Air Power Studies on Saturday, said India was constantly reviewing threats and security environment.

"There is no threat to the country," he said but added, "We are capable to handle all security concerns."

He said the IAF was laying emphasis on trained manpower and adequate number of aircraft. The Air Chief said there were not enough aircraft with the force. "I want more."

The IAF was in the process of procuring 40 SU and six flight refuelling aircraft as also 80 medium light helicopters, Tyagi said.

Emphasising the need to safeguard energy resources and security of economic progress for the growth of the country, he said the IAF was also ready for a role in the counter-insurgency operations.

The role of the force in such operations was "limited", he said adding, "We (IAF) can provide logistic support and reconnaissance in counter-insurgency."

He said the IAF was exploring ways to exploit aero space power, which would play a dominating role in war and peace in the future.

"As far as aero space power is concerned, the IAF is looking at directions other than north," he said noting that most of the wars fought by the country were held in north.

The IAF has constituted an aero space command within the force comprising Centre of Air Power Studies, he said.