DHAKA, Dec 4 (BSS)- Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today urged the Bangladesh Air Force (BAF) to be attentive to ensure highest use of technology and strengthen their willpower to address the future challenge.
Acquirement of technological excellence, research and acquisition of modern equipment can build up a modern air force, she said adding "We should be more attentive to training, research and efficient use of technologies to safeguard our airspace."
The Prime Minister was addressing the BAF members on the occasion of induction of Surface to Air Missile System in the BAF and inauguration of Bangabandhu Aeronautical Centre at Kurmitola Airbase here.
Hailing the BAF's remarkable progress in achieving technological capacity and making the force self-reliant, the Prime Minister said we need to work together to build up an contemporary air force incorporation with latest equipment.
In this regard, she said, BAF has conducted the overhauling of the helicopters of Bangladesh Army and Sri Lankan air force has already expressed interest for overhauling of their choppers by BAF engineers.
Listing the steps undertaken by the government for development of the air force, the Prime Minister said a new air defense radar is being set up in Cox'sbazar for constant surveillance on maritime boundary. The existing radar in Pahar Kanchanpur airbase is also being replaced with modern one, she added.
The Prime Minister said the process for acquisition of two more radars is going on and the government is actively considering to procure a number of cargo plane for the air force.
Pointing out the fiscal benefit given by the government for air force members, she said the government has made restructuring of the air force creating scope to send more members of the air force to the UN peacekeeping missions.
Earlier, the Prime Minister inaugurated the Bangabandhu Aeronautical Centre in the Kurmitola Airbase. The centre has been established aimed at maintenance of the air craft of the BAF by own engineers and technicians with own resources.
BAF official sources said the centre is expected to manufacture prototype of a light aircraft by 2021.
The Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the induction of first ever Surface to Air Missile System in the BAF. The system, introduced with the support of China, is capable of engaging targets flying at low or very low altitude.
Addressing a parade on the occasion, the Prime Minister expressed her government's firm commitment to continue its efforts for modernisation of the country's armed forces.
She said Bangladesh Armed Forces has witnessed a significant improvement during the tenure of the Awami League government and the process would continue in future.
Ministers, PM's advisors, Chinese ambassador to Bangladesh, chiefs of three services, Principal Staff Officer of Bangladesh Armed Forces Division and senior military and civil officials attended the function.