IAF reactivates landing base near China border

IAF reactivates landing base near China border

The advance site at Dharasu is close to Uttarkashi

 Located at an elevation of 2950 feet, the advance landing ground at Dharasu is close to Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand. Its the first reactivated air base outside Jammu and Kashmir.
This is the fourth Air Force Landing Ground (ALG) near the 4057 km long Sino-Indian border, revived by the IAF in the last three years. Significantly this is the first one in the relatively peaceful middle sector, which does not have any border dispute.

Even though an An-32 with six crew members from Agra-based 12 Squadron made a successful touch down at Dharasu on November 21, 2010, the IAF did not disclose the information in the last four months during which Chinese premiere Wen Jiabao visited New Delhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh went to Beijing to further the bilateral relations.
Dharasu is situated in a bowl in the hills with restricted approach from both sides. It has high hills on all sides.

IAF now plans to upgrade the high-altitude Nyoma air-field – within 23 km of the line of actual control – for supporting fighter and heavy-lift operations. It also plans to make a hard landing strip at Daulat Beg Oldie – 10 km from the border – enabling touch down of heavy troop carriers.

But it would take awhile before Nyoma can support fighter and heavy-lift operations. It will take 3-4 years to make it fully functional because at an altitude of 13,000 ft, only 7 to 8 months in a year are available for construction.

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