Air Chief B S Dhanoa writes to each officer: Be ready for operations at short notice

“In the present scenario, there is an ever persistent sub-conventional threat. Therefore, we need to be prepared for operations with our present holdings, at a very short notice.

Written by Sushant Singh | New Delhi | Updated: May 20, 2017 7:15 am
B S Dhanoa, Air Chief, Indian Air Force, india security, surgical strike, india pakistan relations, india news Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa

IN AN unprecedented move, Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa, the Chief of Air Staff, has written a personal letter to each officer of the Indian Air Force (IAF), asking them “to be prepared for operations with our present holdings, at a very short notice”.

The letter, signed March 30, also covers a range of issues from “favouritism” in the force to “sexual harassment”. Written three months after ACM Dhanoa took over as IAF Chief, the letter is being posted and delivered to each of the nearly 12,000 officers of the force.

This is the first time that an IAF chief has written a personal letter to all officers, although two Army chiefs — Field Marshal (then General) K M Cariappa on May 1, 1950 and General K Sundarji on February 1, 1986 — have penned similar missives.

“In the present scenario, there is an ever persistent sub-conventional threat. Therefore, we need to be prepared for operations with our present holdings, at a very short notice.

Training needs to be focused towards this,” says the letter.

The “sub-conventional threat” is said to be a reference to the ‘proxy war’ by Pakistan, which is reflected in the increasing number of terror attacks on military camps and the rising public unrest in Jammu and Kashmir.

The mention in the letter of “our present holdings” is an indication of the severe shortfall in the number of fighter squadrons with the IAF.

The IAF is authorised 42 squadrons of fighter aircraft but its current holding is down to 33. A deal for 36 Rafale fighters, signed with France, and a decision to induct indigenous Tejas fighters will barely make up for the de-induction of the MIG series of fighters from the fleet.

Asking officers to be “combat effective professionals”, ACM Dhanoa writes that “there is no choice but to stay abreast of new technological advancements both own as well as that of our adversaries. Only then will we come out with war-winning, out of the box solutions.”

The letter also reminds officers that “in the recent past, there have been instances and occasions where lack of professionalism has shown the IAF in poor light”.

Indulging in uncharacteristic plainspeak, the IAF chief writes that “we have been witness to a few instances of ‘favouritism’ in selection of officers for prime assignments and promotions”.

“This is something we can ill afford,” the letter says.

Pointing out that “officers holding responsible appointments tend to display ‘Milk of Human Kindness’ while dealing with those involved in wrongful practices”, the letter warns that “abusive behaviour, resorting to physical intimidation and behaviour amounting to sexual harassment by seniors is not acceptable”.

The letter also lays to rest apprehensions about participation by the families of officers in activities of the Air Force Wives Welfare Association (AFWWA) and Ladies Club, calling them “voluntary”. The IAF chief wrote that “(IAF) stations are not judged by their performance in these activities but on operations”.

When contacted by The Indian Express, an IAF spokesperson described the letter as “internal communication” and refused to comment on its contents.

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  1. A
    arun kumar
    May 24, 2017 at 10:55 pm
    Shame on asians always fighting cant stay like europe. Problem starts with family then neighbours then state then nation then religion. Gods infrastructure test them and act.
    Reply
    1. S
      SQN LDR ZULQADAR RASHID PAF
      May 21, 2017 at 7:43 pm
      A professional and much required gesture..for any AIR CHIEF... pletely normal and no cause for any alarm or media hype.Brings to mind Marshal of the IAF ARJAN SINGH AND AIR CHIEFMARSHAL DILBAGH SINGH..
      Reply
      1. T
        Tariq Nazir Syed
        May 21, 2017 at 4:55 pm
        The Indians are acting in a very "jingoistic" manner, especially since Modi took over. So much money is being wasted on armaments. Over 60 of Indians don't even have toilets. Under these and other dire social shortcommings, it is sad that the leadership cannot move beyond confrontation and adopt a mature and constructive at ude in order to resolve problems through result orientated dialog, instead of opting for war as a means of achieving objectives. War will only destroy and depleat resources and push the sub continent decades back. And if conflicts escalate into nuclear war, then one can only see the massive destruction that may result. To think that a couple of million, or some hundred million could die in such a confict, is " acceptable", is absolutely criminal. This does not take into account of the devastation to industry Therefore, any talk about war is insane and reflects the thinking of a criminal mind. STRIVE FOR PEACE AND PROSPARITY OF OUR REGION. THE OMLY SANE WAY
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        1. s
          sanjeev kr.verma
          May 21, 2017 at 12:49 pm
          KEEPING QUIT AND RISK'S TO OUR SOLDIER'S LIFE WILL DICREASE OUR STRENGTH TO FIGHT. A WARRIOR SHOULD ALWAY'S BE PREPARED TO CLINCH HIS DESTINATION. BSF, CRPF AND PARAMILITERY ALL DONE AND WE HAD LISTEN TO THEIR GREAT COMMENT'S ABOUT OUR 3 NATIONAL PILLER ARMED FORCES AND MADED DECISSION TO DEFFENCE FORCE'S I.E AIR,ARMY NEAVY. WE STRIKE THEM OUT HARDER THEN THEY BELEIVE..JAI HIND TIGER BRACTA.
          Reply
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            Basit
            May 21, 2017 at 1:48 am
            So funny letter And funny chief You guys are blessed you have comedian in yoir ranks I hope fighting flyers are fed well in messes unlike soldiers Lovly joke
            Reply
            1. F
              freethinker
              May 20, 2017 at 4:17 pm
              The India army also faced the Chinese in 1962 with their then "present holdings". They fought very bravely but what was the result? The Air Chief should tell his pilots that they should be ready to take heavy losses when war comes.
              Reply
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                Michelle:Vedic:human
                May 20, 2017 at 4:21 pm
                Indian army are not living in 1962 era
                Reply
              2. D
                Danish Tahir
                May 20, 2017 at 3:16 pm
                mark my words... you filthy stinky hindu's...!
                Reply
                1. D
                  DILIP
                  May 20, 2017 at 3:34 pm
                  Looks like the perverted mullha has mutilated your bibi by performing FGM on her and you are unable to climax because her muzzie c l i t is missing. So frustrated Islamo Fascist sc u m , are jake moot maro.
                  Reply
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                    Michelle:Vedic:human
                    May 20, 2017 at 4:00 pm
                    All these just for 72 HOURIES as per Koran: "Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them." Koran 2:191 "Make war on the infidels living in your neighborhood." Koran 9:123 "When opportunity arises, kill the infidels wherever you catch them." Koran 9:5 "Any religion other than Islam is not acceptable." Koran 3:85 "The Jews and the Christians are PEVERTS fight them."... Koran 9:30 "Maim and crucify the infidels if they criticize Islam" Koran 5:33 "Punish the unbelievers with garments of fire, hooked iron rods, boi water melt their skin and bellies." Koran 22:19 "The unbelievers are stupid urge the Muslims to fight them." Koran 8:65 "Muslims must not take the infidels as friends." Koran 3:28 "Terrorize and behead those who believe in scriptures other than the Qur''an." Koran 8:12 "Muslims must muster all weapons to terrorize the infidels." Koran..
                    Reply
                    1. M
                      Michelle:Vedic:human
                      May 20, 2017 at 4:02 pm
                      Sunan Abu Dawud Book 11, Number 2166:Narrated AbuSa’id al-Khudri: “A man said: Apostle of Allah, I have a slave-girl and I withdraw the pen-is from her (while having inter-course), and I dislike that she becomes pregn-ant. I intend (by inter-course) what the men intend by it. The Jews say that withdrawing the pe-nis (azl) is burying the living girls on a small scale. He (the Prophet) said: The Jews told a lie. If Allah intends to create it, you cannot turn it away.” Muhammad AKA Allah created the following Quranic verse allowing for the owning and rap-ing of s-ex slav-es as a divine right: If you fear that you will not act justly towards the orphans, marry such women as seem good to you, two, three, four; but if you fear you will not be equitable, then only one, or what your right hands own; so it is likelier you will not be partial. (
                      Reply
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                        Michelle:Vedic:human
                        May 20, 2017 at 4:05 pm
                        MUHAMMAD OWNED AND RAP-ED HIS SE-X SLAVE-S Enjoying Special Bo-oty (Ga-ni-maat er-maa-l): Muhammad Takes Safiya As Boo-ty To Be His S ex Sl-ave Safiya bint Huyai/Huyayy was a captive Mohammed married after slaughteri ng her father, brother, husband and the men at Khai-bar, according to Bukhari vol.2 book 14 ch.5 no.68 p.35; vol.4 book 52 ch.74 no.143 p.92; vol.4 book 52 ch.168 no.280 p.175 and Tabari vol.39 p.185.i
                        Reply
                      2. D
                        Danish Tahir
                        May 20, 2017 at 3:15 pm
                        You Indians dont have balls!!! Stfu s... Dare to come along... this time their will be no more hindu left on this planet earth!!!
                        Reply
                        1. D
                          DILIP
                          May 20, 2017 at 3:36 pm
                          This time we will shove pigs b ull 0cks up your muzzie butt h00les. Islamo Fascist cr a p ba gs.
                          Reply
                          1. D
                            DILIP
                            May 20, 2017 at 3:42 pm
                            Will shove Pigs bu ll 0cks up your muzzie azz you Islamo fascist butcher.
                            Reply
                          2. T
                            tej bahadur yadav
                            May 20, 2017 at 1:57 pm
                            RSS pawn war drum beating saber ratt and finally losing to china getting soldiers killed by naxals and kashmiri citizens - fedding stale food to soldiers - suspending them tej bahadur - using sahyaks for boot polishing taking etc varna system highly prevalent in army - all top lefftenants , majors colnels are 90 percent bramins and thereafter posts are given to ksyatriyas vaishays and all 90 percent ground soldiers are sc st obc dying for masters miserable deaths
                            Reply
                            1. G
                              GeorgeS
                              May 20, 2017 at 2:19 pm
                              You are the person undermining everything we hold sacred, especially our armed forces and judiciary, the last thing which the common man of India have trust in. I just cannot agree with your views. If you continue to hold on to such a cution mania seeing conspiracies and plots in every aspect of human life, you'll find your own life turning into a living hell.
                              Reply
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                                tej bahadur yadav
                                May 20, 2017 at 3:15 pm
                                dont worry i am elite citizen of US with green card and indian citizenship we really need to reverse 4 varna system and make dalits tribals as top posts and give all gutter cleaning manual scavenging jobs to chaddis
                            2. M
                              Murthy
                              May 20, 2017 at 1:30 pm
                              During the Kargil War, some Western papers said, "The IAF is re-writing aerial warfare in the mountains, focusing on the slopes and peaks to knock out stani bunkers." Nawaz Shariff had said that over 4,000 Pak. soldiers and many more casualties were caused as much by IAF as the Indian Army. So far, IAF has been worth every rupee we are spending on them.
                              Reply
                              1. A
                                ashok
                                May 20, 2017 at 1:16 pm
                                Kiti na sardaran wali gal.
                                Reply
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                                  antony
                                  May 20, 2017 at 12:56 pm
                                  Hello Chief, you cant fight war with imaginary pushpak vimans! with your 32 handicapped fighter squadron what you are going to do? half of the planes are not in flying conditions! since CEPEC is passing through porkistan it is 100 percent clear that china will intervene in any war with porkis to protect its investment ! you should go and tell pm modi that just making big speeches doesnt win war but ask him to allot money to buy fighter planes urgently instead of allotting billions for making UID for cows to close the gap to avoid any future humiliation when a two front war takes place !
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                                    Murthy
                                    May 20, 2017 at 1:25 pm
                                    Thank God, there are not that many "Anthonys" in India or in the IAF. With citizens - you may not be, if you are - it is easier to fight the external enemies....despite your fine sentiments... You are not going to demoralise anyone else with your posts...
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                                      antony
                                      May 20, 2017 at 2:18 pm
                                      RSS stooges like you divide the nation in the name of religion are worse than external enemies like porkistan or china! cowards dont have courage even to infiltrate porkistan and take revenge but good in kil own people that also helpless dairy farmers ! for your chaddi shakha knowledge ! there are thousands of anthony's in Indian armed forces fighting for the country! 2017 Ashok Chakra gone to a Catholic Jawan ! And we dont need patriotic certificate from anti national like you or your sanghi terror organizations!
                                      1. T
                                        Tushar
                                        May 20, 2017 at 4:00 pm
                                        Well said Antony .kudos ... These murthy kinda stooges think they are the only one who had been sent by the god to protect India .. And don't realize that ..he and his party is the reason for the situation India is facing now ..That lack diplomacy ..they think they are supreme to all and remain in idle mode... But other countries had gone forward so far ..and they still chant the dusted and rusted ... Communal slogans of divide and hate
                                    2. R
                                      rohan
                                      May 20, 2017 at 12:41 pm
                                      The Defense Minister should sack this fellow forthwith. Only an could leak such sensitive matter to the news media.OR, has he acted at the behest of of another ?
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                                      1. M
                                        Michelle:Vedic:human
                                        May 20, 2017 at 12:39 pm
                                        Pokistan is a fragile nation created by a convert to Muslim Mohammed Jinnah who's ancestors are Hindu and son of METHI BEN POONJA and JINA BHAI POONJA,---NIA should also prepare for how in short notice to nuke PORKISTAN and break them into 4 separate nations,---Jai hind.
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                                          Bhagwan
                                          May 20, 2017 at 12:39 pm
                                          Need not be commented should not have been publisized
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                                          1. M
                                            Murthy
                                            May 20, 2017 at 12:35 pm
                                            IAF did very well in all the wars they were called upon to fight. In the 1965 War, IAF used the Gnats and Mysteres to great effect, against stan's more modern American gifts like the Sabres and Patton tanks. In the 1971 war also they overcame Pak's signal network by knocking out structures and shooting down a number of their planes. The war came to an end, just as IAF was establishing air supremacy over Pak. air space. If IAF had been called upon to act during the Chinese attack in 1962 may have seen a different result. In the view of a retired Air Force man, even only 20 squadrons is good enough to take the Paks on. The full strength umed fighting on two fronts.
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                                              Pranab
                                              May 20, 2017 at 12:30 pm
                                              How can a Army official come with facts of our exigencies??
                                              Reply
                                              1. S
                                                S Subramaniam
                                                May 20, 2017 at 12:28 pm
                                                It is ironical that IE could access the classified do ent but we are clueless about the illegal funding to the separatists in the J & K.
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                                                  devender
                                                  May 20, 2017 at 12:28 pm
                                                  Rename yourself as "AntiIndian Express"
                                                  Reply
                                                  1. R
                                                    Raghubir Singh
                                                    May 20, 2017 at 12:22 pm
                                                    The Chief’s communication to the officers redefines clearly the organization goals in the context of present hostile environment. Not camouflaging possibly the obsolescence and attrition of fleet are undoubtedly is the most redeeming features. Inspite of shortfalls, the IAF being in the middle of the top ten Air Powers of the world is no mean achievement.The wars have already become highly technology driven-with drones, missiles, standoff weapons having pin point accuracy keeping own aircraft out of harm’s way. Incoming years, the IAF will have to go much beyond the skies to fight star wars in the outer space too? Greatest et of the Air Force are the men & women behind the machines and we are blessed in this regard. IAF should have its own robust R&D team which can bring projects upto incubation stage and hand over to DRDO/DPSU’s for completion.This way even MOAB type can be done in less than year?
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                                                      Skl Oman
                                                      May 20, 2017 at 12:13 pm
                                                      Drinker Army Come . we are ready :))) unforgettable lesson ready for you
                                                      Reply
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