The Indian Airforce (IAF) will construct 108 Next-Generation Hardened Aircraft Shelters (NGHAS)
for its fighter fleet at several of its bases in northeastern India. The NGHASs cost an estimated total of $788 million and will be built at Tezpur, Chabua, and Hasimara to protect IAF fighters such as the Sukhoi Su-30MKI
as well as 18 of the 36 Rafale
combat aircraft New Delhi ordered from France in 2016. China has ramped up activity in the Tibet Autonomous Region, which overlooks Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Ladakh. The new hangars are designed to protect the fighters even from a direct hit by a 2,000 lb bomb.
India’s Su-30MKI fighter-bombers are the pride of its fleet. Below them, India’s local Tejas LCA lightweight fighter program aims to fill its low-end fighter needs, and the $10+ billion M-MRCA competition is negotiating to buy France’s Rafale as an intermediate tier.
India isn’t neglecting its high end SU-30s, though. Initial Su-30MK and MKI aircraft have all been upgraded to the full Su-30MKI Phase 3 standard, and the upgraded “Super 30” standard aims to keep Sukhoi’s planes on top. Meanwhile, production continues, and India is becoming a regional resource for Su-27/30 Flanker family support.