India to open sixth air base in Rajasthan, 100 km from Pakistan

Monday, April 5, 2010

NEW DELHI - The Indian Air Force (IAF) will open a new air base in Rajasthan Tuesday to bridge the strategic air gap between three of its forward bases in the state. The new base, the sixth in the state, is nearly 100 km from the international border with Pakistan.

This airbase will further the strategic gap in air defence in the western sector. The new base is supported with modern infrastructure, an IAF officer here said.

The new air base at Phalodi is located between Jaisalmer and Jodhpur and will straddle the distance between the two bases. It is ready to undertake all types of operations.

“It will serve fighter aircraft and helicopters. As of now, no squadron has been based at Phalodi,” the officer said. Sources, however, maintained that the frontline Sukhoi Su-30MKI combat jets could be deployed at Phalodi.

The IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik, will inaugurate the new air base and witness a flypast by Jaguar, MIG-21 and MIG-29 fighters.

The IAF’s other bases in Rajasthan are located at Suratgarh, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur and Barmer. The first three are close to the international border with Pakistan and are backed by by the bases at Jodhpur and Barmer.

Fighters like the MiG-21 and the MiG-27 operate from these bases.

will not be displayed