Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday lauded the Air Force for its rapid deployment in forward areas in the ongoing standoff with China and said it had sent across a strong message.
Singh was speaking at the inauguration of the three-day biannual conference of the Indian Air Force leadership to discuss the security, operational and deployment scenario within the country.
Addressing the conference, Chief of Air Force, Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria, asserted that the Air Force is prepared to handle any short-term or strategic threats to the country.
Appreciating the “proactive response by the IAF in bolstering its operational capabilities over the past few months”, the Defence Minister said “the professional manner in which IAF conducted the air strikes in Balakot as well as rapid deployment of IAF assets at forward locations in response to the prevailing situation in eastern Ladakh has sent a strong message to the adversaries,” said a government statement.
Singh said the “nation’s resolve to defend its sovereignty stands firm on the faith its people have in the capability of its armed forces”, the statement said. Regarding the efforts to de-escalate on the LAC in eastern Ladakh, Singh “urged the IAF to stand ready to handle any eventuality”, it added.
Air Force Chief Bhadauria said “the IAF was well prepared to counter short term as well as strategic threats”.