CON­CLU­SION

SP's Aviation - - MILITARY -

On the oc­ca­sion of the LCA Mark-1 get­ting IOC, then Air Chief Mar­shal N.A.K. Browne had re­port­edly stated, “The fi­nal goal for all of us is not just LCA Mark-1, but LCA Mark-2. While our air war­riors are fully geared up to in­duct and op­er­a­tionalise the two Mark-1 squadrons, IAF keenly looks for­ward to in­duc­tion of four squadrons of LCA Mark-2 as the fi­nal ver­sion in its pro­jected force struc­ture.” The fu­ture trajectory of the LCA Mark-1A and Mark-2 is not yet con­vinc­ingly cer­tain and, even if all the items in HAL’s wish list for LCA Mark-2 are ticked off suc­cess­fully, it is not meant to per­form like the Rafale or the Su-30. But, if in­ducted in large num­bers to ar­rest the de­ple­tion of com­bat squadrons, it would still make a dif­fer­ence to the IAF in the event of a two-front war. In­deed, if the num­bers are ad­e­quate, even with its mod­est per­for­mance, the LCA Mark-2 could make a sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tion to avert­ing an ig­no­min­ious IAF per­for­mance in the aerial war.

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