NEW DELHI, April 15: Indian Air Force pilots are raring to go at Pakistan, and New Delhi is in no mood to scale down the military alert along its tense borders.

This was the sum and substance of the signal that came from a meeting on Monday, between Defence Minister George Fernandes and air force commanders.

“How can we review the deployment? It will remain there as long as Islamabad does not address our security concerns,” Fernandes said when asked if the Indian government had set any time frame for the forward deployment.

Mr Fernandes was speaking to reporters at the end of a bi-annual air force commanders conference, where the deployment figured prominently.

Star News quoted him as saying that a new dimension had been added to the deployment with the melting of snows on the high Himalayan passes. New Delhi was apprehending fresh bids at infiltration from across the Line of Control (LOC), he said.

Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal S Krishnaswamy, who was also present, said armed forces were operationally deployed and ready to respond to any challenge from across the borders.

Mr Krishnaswamy sought to dispel an impression that prolonged deployment could result in fatigue setting in. He claimed that the forces on the borders were “well focused” and “aviators raring to have a go”.

The air chief said: “The forces were not deployed on the border for any show, but for business.”—JN

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