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Key Indian Army, IAF commanders meet; talk synergy


New Delhi : In the first such effort, the commanders of the Indian Army’s and the IAF’s swordarms that defend most of the western frontiers with Pakistan met one-on-one here Monday to discuss better coordination between their forces and beefing up security in the region.

The Indian Army’s Chandimandir-based Western Commander, Lt. Gen. Sanjeev Chachra, called on the Indian Air Force’s Subroto Park-based Western Commander, Air Marshal Arup Raha, to discuss their respective formations’ operational readiness and means to achieve jointness, a defence ministry official here said.

“This is first such meeting between the commanders of the two spearhead formation of the Indian Army and the Indian Air Force since they assumed their respective appointments recently,” the official said.

“The two commanders had several rounds of discussions with the command staff on numerous operational aspects,” he said.

The two officers had taken over their appointments last month.

The Western Army Command and the Western Air Command work closely on a day-to-day basis on a wide spectrum of operational issues.

A deep operational synergy exists within the two formations to ensure real-time sharing of information and optimum utilisation of resources be it air defence networks and assets, sharing of intelligence inputs or fine-tuning operational plans.

The Western Air Command is also similarly engaged with the Udhampur-based Northern Army Command and the recently-formed Jaipur-based South Western Army Command.

The Western Air Command has a unique role in support of the three operational army commands. The challenging task entrusted upon the Western Air Command is supported by the advance headquarters of the Western Air Command, headed by Air Vice Marshal P.N. Kaushik and is co-located with the Western Army Command in Chandimandir.

An army ground liaison section located at the Western Air Command headquarters in Subroto Park, headed by a colonel, provides a reciprocal support for the army formations.

This unique section has played a significant role during operations in the past. The section is active throughout the year and supports operations of three army commands associated with the Western Air Command.

Lt. Gen. Chachra and Air Marshal Raha termed their meeting as “a continuation of the operational jointness between the two formations”.

“Such visits are aimed at appreciating mutual concerns, constraints, dynamics and synergy in the operations amidst an ever changing security scenario,” the defence ministry official added.