The Indian Air Force is considering taking over three airstrips in Uttarakhand. This will not only strengthen the IAF operational capabilities but also help in improving air connectivity for the locals in the area in Uttarakhand. Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Anil Chauhan disclosed this during the event ‘Raibaar-5’ in Delhi’s India International Centre on Saturday.
The three airstrips include Pithoragarh in the Kumaon Hills and, Dharasu and Gauchar in the Garhwal Hills areas in Uttarakhand. The landing strips were made on the state government’s land. The Government of Uttarakhand has shown its desire for handing over them to the airforce and shared the details with the Defence Ministry.
General Anil Chauhan said that the Indian Air Force is in the process of taking over these three landing grounds after accepting the state government’s proposal.
The CDS also listed some measures that the armed forces have taken to help people in bordering states. General Chauhan mentioned that the forces used to buy local produce like milk and fresh food from cooperative societies in states like Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Ladakh.
“This was not applicable to the states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh till now, but it has been made applicable in these two states also. Now the Army will buy local produce from the cooperatives in these two states and help them,” said Gen. Chauhan.
The CDS said that the defence forces have also expanded the scope of ‘ Operation Sadbhavna ‘ to the border states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh from last year. ‘Operation Sadbhavana’ is an undertaking of the Indian Army in Ladakh to conduct welfare activities such as running of Goodwill Schools, infrastructure development projects, sports activities as well as education tours.