Indian Air Force (IAF) can put out double the number of fighter aircraft in combat compared to the Pakistan Air Force, should the situation arise, IAF Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa said, the Indian Express reported today.
IAF has achieved unprecedented serviceability levels of 80 percent for its fighter aircraft during the ongoing training exercise Gagan Shakti, the report said.
“Full credit goes to our engineers that we have built up the serviceability of fighter aircraft to 80%, compared to a target of 75%, and a dispatch reliability of more than 95% during Gagan Shakti exercise”, the IAF Chief was quoted as saying in the report.
At 70% serviceability for its 371 fighter jets, Pakistan Air Force is estimated to be able to bring approximately 260 aircraft into combat but they have lesser stamina and capability than their IAF counterparts, the report said.
Exercise Gagan Shakti, the report quoted sources as saying, was not about learning tactical lessons but focused on checking logistics stamina to build up and sustain the high serviceability levels. This physically validates the operating time and effort taken to rotate the fighter aircraft after it has made one sortie, fired all its weapons and turn them out again after loading them fully.
As per Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa, “This has happened due to support of the defence ministry and because of close cooperation with public sector units such as HAL and BEL. I have said it at the recent Defence Expo in Chennai and personally thanked HAL Chairperson Dr T Suvarna Raju for the tremendous support HAL has given for the buildup of this serviceability.”