TNI || New Delhi || 1st April 2022
The Indian Air Force has partnered with the Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) to introduce the “Fleet Card-Fuel on Move” for its diverse fleet of vehicles, marking a fundamental shift in its ‘fuel supply’ logistics management.
This move is expected to boost operational duties while also enhancing the mobility of essential resources.
Fleet Card, the energy security for IAF vehicles on the move, was launched by Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari, Chief of Air Staff, at Headquarters Western Air Command, Subroto Park. Mr. SM Vaidya, Chairman IOCL, and Air Marshal S Prabhakaran, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Air Command, were also present on the occasion.
In addition to having direct impacts on the IAF’s ability to rapidly redeploy forces in response to requirements, the move will have various indirect effects on the IAF’s combat potential and effective logistic management, as per the IAF.
The IAF’s action is in keeping with the Shekatkar Committee’s recommendations to improve the Armed Forces’ teeth to tail ratio. Air warriors and other resources involved in fuel management inside the IAF can be re-allocated to other operational tasks, as per an official who did not want to be identified.
The principal agency in the creation and execution of this revolutionary concept of “Fuel on Move” was appointed as HQ Western Air Command.
Due to the availability of the Fleet Card, the caravan will be able to fill up at any IOCL fuel station, allowing for faster movement and shorter lead times for preparedness at operating areas around the country.
Aside from aircraft, the IAF uses a variety of vehicles, including big trucks that transport air defence equipment, missiles, and radars. Its portfolio also includes buses, light motor vehicles, and other vehicles. Currently, the IAF purchases gasoline from various organisations and retailers and distributes it throughout the Air Force.
As a result, any road movement is limited by the need for convoys to halt at AF stations for refuelling.
With the introduction of the Fleet Cards, IAF will be able to refuel its vehicles on the move using the extensive network of retail fuel dealers across the country.
The action will substantially improve the rapid mobility of IAF units around the country, as they will be able to take the shortest path between two points without having to stop at military stations for refuelling.
Fuel retailers, particularly in far-flung places where the IAF has a presence, are set to benefit tremendously from the shift, which will support local economies even more.
Fuel accounting will become considerably more efficient since paperwork will be reduced by a large amount.
This is consistent with the government’s goal of minimum government and maximum governance. With the adoption of cards, the IAF will be able to minimize its carbon footprint by reducing the paperwork associated with accounting for and settling dues.