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`Aero Space Command likely in capital'

Staff Reporter

Air Marshal Savur to retire tomorrow

Thiruvananthapuram: The capital stood a good chance of hosting the headquarters of the proposed Aero Space Command of the Indian Air Force (IAF), Air Marshal S.Y. Savur said here on Wednesday.

Interacting with media persons, the Southern Air Command chief said a committee of Chief of Staffs was considering the matter. Proximity to international sea-routes and various facilities of the Indian Space Department gave the capital an edge over other cities. The Union Government would take the final decision on the matter after considering all angles. The chances of establishing a tri-services command in the capital as a pre-cursor to a full-fledged aerospace command were also high.

The IAF has sought more land from the Airports Authority of India for expanding the Air Force Station at Shangumugham. There was a proposal to build a VIP reception area there. The G. V. Raja School, which the IAF acquired, would be used for housing IAF staff members. The airbase at Thanjavur was being expanded. The IAF has operational plans to tackle sea-pirates and hijackers of oil tankers, the Air Marshal said.

Highly decorated officer

The Air Marshal will retire on August 31. He joined the IAF in the Flying Branch on October 29. He has flown several VIPs, including the late Prime Ministers, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. The Air Marshal is a highly decorated officer and recipient of the Param Vishisht and Ati Vishisth Seva Medals for distinguished service of the most exceptional order. His wife, Asha Savur, is a dental surgeon. They have two children.

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