Pakistan and China shook hands, India `ramped up` its military modernization

Pakistan and China shook hands, India `ramped up` its military modernization 0

(Dan Tri) – The stealth fighter agreement between Pakistan and China is putting a lot of pressure on India in its strategy to modernize its increasingly aging air force.

The FC-31 Gyrfalcon may be called J-31 or J-35 as it has not yet been officially named (Photo: Reddit).

At the end of December 2023, during an important event commemorating the 147th birth anniversary of leader Mohammad Ali Jinnah, founder of Pakistan, the country launched a series of new weapons, including fighter jets.

Pakistan is also expanding its efforts to buy more stealth fighter jets from China.

He did not specify how many Chinese jets PAF would buy and when.

Executive Director of the Pakistan-China Institute in Islamabad, Mustafa Hyder said Pakistan’s plan to buy the FC-31 Gyrfalcon shows `increasing military and defense cooperation` with China to counter `insurgents`.

Military experts say that this reality forces India to speed up modernization of its air force by purchasing more F-35 aircraft from the US to avoid losing tactical air superiority along the border.

Professor Harsh Pant of international studies at King’s College London’s India Institute said the deal will continue to put pressure on India to move forward with purchasing the F-35, even as it accelerates its program.

The FC-31 Gyrfalcon may be called J-31 or J-35 as it has not yet been officially named by Beijing.

India has had multiple conflicts with both China and Pakistan since the 1960s over more than 6,800 km of the disputed border between the two sides.

Expert Frank O’Donnell said that Pakistan’s equipping of fifth-generation stealth fighters, a type of aircraft that the Indian Air Force (IAF) currently does not have, will bring the country `an advantage`.

Pakistan’s close military ties with China mean the country can `acquire and field advanced aircraft at a much faster pace than the cumbersome process in India`, expert

To keep up with these neighboring countries, expert O’Donnell said that India needs to overcome long-term challenges when its fighter fleet is dwindling and continuously delays the purchase of fighter aircraft at home and abroad.

Despite receiving 36 4.5 generation Rafale fighters from France’s Dassault Aviation in the past two years, the IAF’s modernization process still `has not kept pace with the aging rate of the current fleet`.

`To make progress on this front, India must have a political commitment to streamline the defense procurement process and remove policy barriers,` Mr. O’Donnell said.

Pakistan responded to India’s acquisition of Rafale by ordering 25 Chengdu J-10Cs in 2022. While Pakistan’s main motive for purchasing advanced Chinese fighter jets is to defend against the Indian army.

`India has been given financial and military support to become a counterweight to China in Asia, since it left its traditional non-aligned foreign policy,` said Hyder of the Pakistan Institute.

However, New Delhi does not seem too worried about Islamabad’s upcoming purchase of Beijing’s stealth fighter jet because the FC-31 is still in the process of being completed.

`It is important to remember that the FC-31 is still in the development stage. They are lagging behind and this deal may help China more than Pakistan in the long run,` Professor Pant said

He also said that Pakistan has no other choice but to seek advanced Chinese fighter jets to replace the aging US fleet of 75 F-16 fighter jets because the country `realizes that the

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