The Indian Air Force (IAF) can now station its fighter jets safely at locations close to Pakistan and China borders as the government has cleared the construction of around 110 hardened shelters at key frontier locations. The missile-proof shelters will act as a shield from any kind of bombing threat during enemy attacks.
"The central government has cleared a project for the construction of around 110 hardened shelters also known as blast pens which protect the fighter planes from enemy missile or bomb attacks", government sources told ANI.
The project cost of these blast pens has been pegged at Rs 5,000 crore and will be built in a phased manner at the air bases allowing the IAF to keep its frontline planes at forward bases without the worry of getting damaged on ground, the sources said.
Here is how this shelter project of the IAF will be carried out
These facilities will have concrete walls surrounded by a strong embankment on two or three sides but open from the front to admit and store aircraft. They will have the capability to guard the aircraft from bombs, explosives or missiles.
"After the development of these blast pins, IAF will have the option to deploy its frontline aircrafts like Su-30MKI at the borders without getting vandalized", the sources stated.
Meanwhile, the IAF is in process of equipping the Su-30MKI fighter jets used with Israeli SPICE-2000 Bombs which were used by the force's Mirage 2000 fighter jets during the Balakot air strike.
This development comes as a pre-emptive step by the IAF to thwart any further terror attack after Pulwama incident being planned by Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), as informed by India's foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale in the Press Conference after the IAF's retaliatory air strike at JeM's terror den at Balakot in Pakistan on February 27.
(Edited by: Nehal Solanki)