October 3, 2022

IAF’s role in future conflicts crucial, needs to harness capabilities and opportunities offered by AI, others: Defence Minister

Second bi-annual IAF Commanders’ Conference held

New Delhi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has said the role of Indian Air Force (IAF) in future conflicts is crucial and it needs to harness the capabilities and opportunities offered by Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data Handling and Machine Learning.

The Defence Minister was addressing the Air Force Commanders on the inaugural day of biannual IAF Commanders’ Conference after inaugurating it at Air Headquarter (Vayu Bhawan) in New Delhi on November 10. Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari PVSM AVSM VM ADC welcomed the Defence Minister, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat PVSM UYSM AVSM YSM SM VSM ADC and Secretary Defence Production Raj Kumar. The CAS introduced the IAF Commanders to the Defence Minister.    

In his address, he appreciated the IAF for maintaining a high level of preparedness, ability to respond on a short notice and displaying high standards of professionalism in carrying out operational and peace time tasks. The Defence Minister remarked on the volatile situation on the borders and said the Armed Forces need to be prepared to respond at a short notice for any contingency.

He also mentioned that the efforts in the field of indigenisation through ‘Make in India’ initiative of Government of India is showing results and the orders of LCA Mk 1A and C-295 will open new opportunities in the indigenous aerospace sector.

Expounding on theatrisation, he mentioned that enhancing jointness is essential and the structure should be evolved after closely examining various options, and inputs from all stakeholders would be taken into consideration. The Defence Minister concluded by exhorting the commanders to brainstorm to evolve viable solutions towards the conference theme of “Ensuring Certainty amidst Uncertainties”.  The CAS thereafter briefed the Defence Minister on the current status of the IAF.

The Air Chief addressed all Commanders and “emphasised on the need to develop multi-domain capability in order to give a swift and befitting response to any misadventures by our adversaries”. He also stressed on the need for joint training with the Indian Army and Indian Navy to enable synergised application of combat power in future conflicts. The CAS complimented all the commanders for maintaining a high state of readiness despite challenges posed by the pandemic.         

The Commanders’ Conference is being conducted from November 10 to 12. Uncertainty in the geo-political landscape makes it an imperative for the armed forces to train, equip and adapt to rapid changes. During the Conference, commanders will discuss and brainstorm situations which may affect National Security and focus on measures to enhance operational capability. Issues pertaining to strengthening training and optimising HR policies for effective utilisation of manpower will also be discussed.

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