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China poses long-term challenge to India's strategic goal realisation: IAF chief

Indian Air Force chief Vivek Ram Chaudhuri pointed to China’s continued display of its economic and military muscle. (PTI)Premium
Indian Air Force chief Vivek Ram Chaudhuri pointed to China’s continued display of its economic and military muscle. (PTI)

  • Speaking at an event organized by the New Delhi-based Centre for Air Power Studies think-tank, Vivek Ram Chaudhuri said China’s “growing imprint will surely increase contestation and competition in the economic domain”

NEW DELHI : China poses a more significant and long-term challenge to the realisation of India's strategic goals, Indian Air Force chief Vivek Ram Chaudhuri said Wednesday adding that both China and Pakistan had significantly enhanced their military capabilities.

Speaking at an event organized by the New Delhi based Centre for Air Power Studies think-tank, Chaudhuri pointed to China’s continued display of its economic and military muscle saying that China’s “growing imprint will surely increase contestation and competition in the economic domain."

“China will seek to further tie us down in keeping us engaged on the unsettled borders. Its aggressive imprint is visible in the rapid enhancement of the PLAAF (People’s Liberation Army Air Force) infrastructure in terms of hardened aircraft shelters and additional airfields in the Tibet Autonomous Region," Chaudhari said.

In the terms of equipment, the PLAAF had moved air defence units to forward positions along with fourth and fifth-generation aircraft, he said.

This was supplemented by supersonic drones, he said adding that force multipliers like their rocket force and strategic forces were redefining the contours of future warfare.

“In my assessment, China poses a more significant and long term threat to the realization of India’s strategic goals," he said.

While India had established reasonably sound diplomatic ties with countries in the Indian Ocean regions, Chaudhuri said. But these were being tested due to contestations in the Indo-Pacific region, he said.

“While these bring plenty of challenges, they also offer multiple opportunities," Chaudhuri said adding: “China’s hegemonic and sometimes entrapping policies can provide opportunities for India to leverage both in trade and military domains."

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