One of biggest exercises of the Indian Air Force preparing for a dual threat from China and Pakistan will begin from Sunday to test the force’s war capabilities in a short, intense battle scenario.
More than 11,000 aircraft will run over 4,000 sorties during Gaganshakti exercise. The IAF will press the entire machinery to check its concept of operations and war-waging capability.
More than 15,000 officials will participate in the two-week exercise that will continue till April 23.
“This year the IAF has planned tactics that will be tested in a real-time scenario,” the IAF said in a statement. Close coordination with the Army and the Navy will be part of the preparatory efforts.
Drills will also be carried out for special operations, maritime operations, mass casualty evacuation.
“It is for the first time that efficacy and integration of LCA in the operational matrix of the IAF is planned. The logistics stamina of the IAF and the ability to sustain continuous operations through day and night would be put to test,” the IAF statement said.
Apart from wartime drills, IAF will also practice and validate various Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief drills that it is expected to undertake from time to time. Such measure would involve mobilisation of air ambulance version of transport aircraft and helicopters to airlift simulated sitting and bedridden ‘casualties’ to metros or big cities and would include evacuation of ‘casualties’ from highways that facilitate such operations.
Apart from wartime preparation, the Indian Air Force will also practise and validate various Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief drills