The Indian Armed Forces—Continuation

Indian Air Force
With a strength of approximately 170,000 personnel, 1,130 combat and 1,700 non-combat aircraft in active service, the Indian Air Force is the fourth largest air force in the world. In recent years, the IAF has undertaken an ambitious expansion and modernization program and is increasingly used for India's power projection beyond South Asia. In its history, the IAF has generally relied on Soviet, British, Israeli and French military craft and technology to support its growth. In recent times, however, India has successfully made its own original aircraft, including the HAL Tejas, a 4.5th generation fighter, and the HAL Dhruv, a multi-role helicopter, which has been exported to many countries, including Israel, Burma, Nepal and Ecuador. India also maintains UAV squadrons which can be used to carry out ground attacks and aerial surveillance.
India is testing its own long range BVR air to air missile named Astra and also building a Medium Altitude Long Endurance Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) called Rustom. India and Russia are building number of next generation aircraft like 5th generation stealth aircraft called Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft and medium-lift military transport aircraft called Multirole Transport Aircraft.
Indian Coast Guard
The Indian Coast Guard is the maritime Para Military Force (PMF) created to guard Republic of India's vast coastline. It was created on 18 August 1978 as an independent entity as per the Coast Guard Act. Its primary objective is to guard India's vast coastline and operates under the effective control of the Ministry of Defense.
The coast guard works closely with the Indian Navy and the Indian Customs Department, and is usually headed by a naval officer of the rank of Vice-Admiral. India's coast guard has a large number of fast craft including hovercrafts and hydrofoils. They patrol the seas and river mouths. The coast guard has performed a number of commendable tasks of rescuing distressed personnel. It has also apprehended pirates on high seas and cleaned up oil spills. Heavy patrolling of sensitive areas such as Karnataka, Gujarat, West Bengal and Mumbai have resulted in the nabbing of a large number of smugglers and illegal immigrants.
Border Security Force
The Border Security Force (BSF) is a border patrol agency of the Government of India. Established on December 1, 1965, it is a component of the paramilitary forces of India (PMF) and its primary role is to guard India's international borders during peacetime and also prevent transnational crime. Like most paramilitary units of India, the BSF is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Home Affairs. It is one of the many law enforcement agencies of India.

Strategic Nuclear Command
India possesses an arsenal of nuclear weapons and maintains a no-first use, non-use against non-nuclear nations and a credible nuclear deterrence policy against nuclear adversaries. Although India possesses submarine launched ballistic missile capability, it lacks ballistic missile submarines. India will complete the nuclear triad with the commissioning of the Advanced Technology Vessel (possibly before 2010). The delivery systems for nuclear weapons include the intermediate-range ballistic missiles and long range strategic bombers. India's nuclear missiles include the Prithvi, the Agni, the Shaurya, Sagarika, Dhanush, and others. India has long range strategic bombers like the Tupolev Tu-22 M3 and Tupolev Tu-142 as well as fighter jets capable of being armed with nuclear tipped bombs and missiles. Since India doesn't have a nuclear first use against an adversary, it becomes important to protect from a first strike. Presently, this protection is provided by the two layered Anti-ballistic missile defense system. 

India has the world's 9th largest defense budget. In 2009, India's official military budget stood at $32.7 billion. In 2004, the estimated India's budget to be around $100 billion in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP). According to Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, India's military budget (PPP) stood at $72.7 billion in 2007. A major portion of India's current defense budget is devoted to the ambitious modernization program of the country's armed forces. Between 2007 and 2012, India is expected to spend about $50 billion on the procurement of new weapons.
Gallantry awards: 
The highest wartime gallantry award given by the Military of India is the Param Vir Chakra (PVC), followed by the Maha Vir Chakra (MVC) and the Vir Chakra (VrC). Its peacetime equivalent is the Ashoka Chakra. The highest decoration for meritorious service is the Param Vishisht Seva Medal.

Future Analysis of the Central Intelligence Agency indicates that India is projected to possess the fourth most capable concentration of power by 2015. According to a report published by the US Congress, India is the developing world's leading arms purchaser.

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