Rafale Fighter Aircraft has been formally inducted into the Indian Air Force at a formal function at Air Force Station, Ambala. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces of France graced the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, the Defence Minister said the induction of Rafale is a historic moment and a very important milestone in the history of the IAF. He said, the Rafale deal was a game changer for India’s national security and its induction is a strong message for the world and especially for those who challenge India’s sovereignty.
Mr Singh reiterated the resolve of not compromising India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity under any circumstances. He also said strengthening defence is aimed at achieving international peace and stability and India does not want to take any step that can endanger international peace.
Terming that the Rafale induction reflected close India-France strategic relations, Mr Singh said both countries have cooperated closely in a number of areas to enhance defence cooperation. As part of the transfer of technology agreement, 6 Scorpene submarines are being built at the Mazagaon Docks. On the basis of this partnership, the first submarine, INS Kalvari was commissioned in 2017.
The Minister also pitched for French investments in the Indian defence manufacturing sector. He said in response to the call for ‘Self-reliant initiative’ by Prime Minister, many policy reforms have been initiated such as manufacturing of defence equipment under the strategic-Partnership model, enhancing FDI up to 74 percent by automatic route, establishment of two defence corridors in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and reforms in Offsets.
He congratulated the IAF personnel for the swift and decisive action taken by them near LAC recently. He said the rapid deployment of IAF assets at forward bases created a trust that the nation’s Air Force was fully prepared to meet its operational obligations.
Source: News On Air