Upgradation program of IAF aircraft
With the dwindling squadron strength, the IAF had long ago adopted a viable strategy to maintain its combat potential by moving on two tracks simultaneously. These two tracks were identified as acquisition route and upgradation route.
The acquisition route seems to have run into rough weather as the Ministry of Defence is yet to seal a deal for 126 Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) which is under negotiation for last two years, though the actual process was initiated six years ago. The IAF had also hoped to begin joint production of the Fifth Generation Aircraft with Russia by the end of this decade but the process has not yet moved to concrete execution phase.
The Indian Light Combat Aircraft will also not see its entry into the operational phase, as the aircraft which was supposed to replace three and four decades old MiG-21 fighters will not join the combat fleet of the IAF before 2018 as DRDO has been asked to produce a better model LCA Mk-11, with more powerful engine.
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