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IAF now guarding Indian economy: Tyagi

The Indian Air Force is now concentrating on providing security to economic installations in the country, Chief of Air Staff SP Tyagi said.

india Updated: Jan 16, 2006 18:26 IST

The growing economy has altered the focus of Indian Air Force which is now concentrating on providing security to economic installations in the country, Chief of Air Staff SP Tyagi said on Monday.

"The Indian economy is unstoppable and so we have altered our focus from geo-political issues to geo-economic issues," he told reporters on the sidelines of commanders' conference at South Western Air Command (SWAC) headquarters in Gandhinagar.

"Today the concern for economic security has become stronger than political factors," Tyagi said, adding the IAF is now concentrating on providing security for trade and energy installations of the country.

"Today trade and energy needs of the country are on the rise. So we need better reach and more exploitation of air space," he said. "It is a whole new ball game."

The Air Chief said in the era of globalisation "geographical boundaries known as borders are vanishing and IAF is looking 25 years ahead."

"The core-areas we are concentrating on are extending our reach through long-range aeroplanes. We have flight refuelling capacity and we need more, we need radar cover for our planes and so we are getting AWACS which will be delivered by the end of 2007," Tyagi said.

"We have our goal in place and the time frame of how our plans progress depends on the budgetary allocations for Defence," he added.

First Published: Jan 16, 2006 18:26 IST