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Maintain transparency in defence deals: Indian Defence Minister

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File photo of A K Antony.

NEW DELHI (BNS): Exhorting Indian Air Force officials to plug any gaps in defence procurement procedures, Defence Minister A K Antony has said that optimum transparency and fairness should be maintained in all such deals without compromising the country’s defence preparedness.

Addressing the Air Force Commanders’ Conference here on Monday, Antony said that the primacy of air power would be a decisive factor in shaping the outcome of future conflicts, a Ministry of Defence statement said here.

Complimenting the IAF for evolving into a major component of national power, he said that it had contributed significantly during last year’s terror attacks in Mumbai as also in the rescue and relief operations in Bihar, Orissa and Uttar Pradesh which were struck by natural disasters.

Referring to Pakistan, he said, “We will not take the peace process with Islamabad further till it takes stern action on terrorism emanating from its soil.”

Antony said the process of finalising a set of operational directives for the country’s three Services was on. The directives will devise ways for the Air Force, Army and Navy to work in close coordination.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal FH Major, also addressed the conference.

Over the next three days, the IAF Commanders will deliberate on some key issues and re-orient the operational thinking in the IAF, the statement said.

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