Reactivated airfield in Arunachal strategic: IAF chiefNovember 18th, 2011 - 5:17 pm ICT by IANS
Bangalore, Nov 18 (IANS) Reactivation of an advanced landing ground (ALG) at Vijayanagar on the Sino-Indian border in Arunachal Pradesh is of strategic importance for the region, Indian Air Force chief Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne said Friday.
“The reactivated airstrip at Vijayanagar will enable us to land medium-lift transport aircraft like AN-32 and C-130J Hercules in addition to helicopters. The renovated airfield will be of strategic use to improve logistics and develop the region,” Browne told reporters here.
The IAF Friday resumed operations at the 4,000-feet long airstrip at an altitude of 4,200 metres (12,600 feet) with the landing of its AN-32 with Arunachal governor General (retd) J.J Singh and Eastern Air Command chief, Air Marshal S. Varthaman, onboard for its formal inauguration.
“The renovated air base will support the army and the Arunachal government with better air connectivity to its troops and people in the region. Though it will be extensively used for transporting men and materials (goods), combat aircraft will not be able to land as the airstrip is shorter in length,” Browne said on the margins of a conference on aerospace medicine.
Located at the tri-junction of India, Myanmar and China border, the upgraded ALG in the Changlang district of the border state was set up in 1962 as a strategic base for operational reasons in the difficult terrain.
“The ALG was shut down in 2009 to rebuild it and strengthen the military infrastructure, strike capabilities and operational logistics in the eastern sector,” an air force officer told IANS.
“We are upgrading other ALGs in the north-eastern sector like Pasighat, Mechuka, Walong, Tuting and Ziro as well as helipads in Arunachal,” the officer said.
Clarifying that modernisation of infrastructure in the north-eastern region was not to counter the Chinese build-up across the border, Browne said the efforts would provide greater access to the hinterlands, which could not develop due to lack of connectivity.
“The increased accessibility will lead to all-round development of the northeast region,” he added.
The modernissation measures include raising a new mountain strike corps with 45,000 troops in addition to the two new mountain infantry divisions, with 1,260 officers and 35,011 soldiers in Nagaland and Assam.
The region has also seen deployment of Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, spy drones, helicopters and missile squadrons.
- India re-activating air strip in Arunachal - Nov 17, 2011
- India quietly activates airstrip near Chinese border - Apr 27, 2011
- IAF to induct more fighters, radars in northeast - Jul 27, 2011
- Indian Army wants night landing facilities in border airfields - Oct 10, 2011
- IAF to set up defence radar station in Mizoram - Dec 04, 2011
- Changes in IAF top brass in the offing - Jul 22, 2011
- Varthaman IAF's Eastern Air Command chief - Aug 01, 2011
- Antony becomes first Defence Minister to land at Nyoma - Jun 23, 2010
- IAF commanders assess force levels - Oct 12, 2011
- Defence Ministry defines terms of MoU on ALGs on Arunachal - May 20, 2008
- New IAF vice chief, Eastern air commander take charge - Aug 01, 2011
- Ace fighter pilot Browne is new IAF vice chief (Lead) - Jan 01, 2011
- Six additional C-130J airliftes to be based in Orissa - Oct 03, 2011
- India to up defences in Andamans, Lakshadweep - Jun 27, 2011
- India Air Force activates Nyoma airfield close to China border - Sep 18, 2009
Tags: 130j hercules, aerospace medicine, air chief marshal, air force chief, air marshal, airstrip, algs, border state, combat aircraft, command chief, eastern sector, formal inauguration, helipads, hinterlands, indian air force, indian border, military infrastructure, operational logistics, operational reasons, vijayanagar