All clear for IAF’s mountain radar in Ladakh; Will ensure eyes on LAC

The National Board of Wildlife (NBWL) recently cleared all ways for Indian Air Force (IAF) to set up mountain radars in Ladakh by giving approval for their induction. This is one of the few recently planned measures to embolden the far North region in terms of connectivity and security.

The move came after a meeting which was chaired by Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav on January 27, 2023. During the meeting, NBWL okayed the transfer of 31.6 hectares of land from Ladakh’s Changthang Wildlife Sanctuary dedicated for IAF’s mountain radar.

Reportedly, the mountain radars of the IAF are going to be inducted at the newly proposed IAF base in a sanctuary in Ladakh. The base got approval from the NBWL last year in a high-level meeting. The radar, which will help India maintain eyes on the LAC, is part of a series of Defence plans given the long-standing border row with China.

Radars in talks for some time

The mountainous terrain of Ladakh and the eastern theatre till now has allowed for relatively low coverage of radars. In view of enhancing the air defence in the treacherous regions, the Government of India has been looking to deploy a large bulk of radars, mostly Made-in-India. 

Additionally, India is working on a war footing in developing the border regions, especially for facilitating the movement of defence personnel and logistics. The developments include approvals for several operational tracks in key strategic areas for easy and quick deployment of resources.

New IAF base proposed in Ladakh

The mountain radar which will be supposedly set up in the newly proposed IAF base in Ladakh got its approval from the apex body for all things Wildlife in India, NBWL last year. Approvals were given for 500 hectares from the sanctuary, situated near the LAC.

The Indian Armed forces are also looking to upgrade the Nyoma Advanced Landing Ground (ALG) for fighter aircraft operations. The ALG at perilous high altitude region has seen active operations by Heavy Life Choppers, Chinooks and C-130J Special Operations Aircraft.

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