http://www.telegraphindia.com/1101229/jsp/nation/story_13364400.jsp New Delhi, Dec. 28: Fighter aircraft squadrons will be deployed for the first time in south India and the Andamans, regions where Indian Air Force bases have so far had only transport planes and other logistics facilities. Air Marshal P.K. Barbora, the IAF vice-chief, said the deployment was aimed at countering the threat of aerial or sea attacks by â€œnon-state actors such as the Lashkar-e-Toiba and the LTTEâ€, which the home ministry suspects is regrouping. The plan is also seen as a way to thwart attacks by terrorists and pirates, who could target oil tankers headed to Indian ports with the aim of crippling the countryâ€™s growth by choking supplies to the energy-hungry nation. â€œThis (fighters in the south) is in our plans. The first two squadrons of the light-combat aircraft (LCA) would be based in south India. Squadrons of either the MMRCA (medium multi-role combat aircraft) or the Sukhoi would be there too,â€ Barbora said on the sidelines of an IAF event. One squadron comprises 15 to 20 jets. The LCAs could be based at Sulur in Tamil Naduâ€™s Coimbatore. â€œThe role of the IAF would increase in south India. We are also thinking of increasing our presence in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. As far as non-state actors are concerned, we canâ€™t say when, where and what they will do...if defence services are called upon to contribute to efforts to put down the design of non-state actors, we are always available.â€ The IAFâ€™s planned expansion in the south is also aimed protecting Indiaâ€™s larger interests in the Indian Ocean Region. Speaking about the indigenously built LCA, named Tejas, Barbora announced that the jets would be deployed by the end of 2011. The LCA is set to get induction clearance next month despite â€œsome issuesâ€, though Barbora said the IAF was â€œreasonably happyâ€ with the jet to give it initial operational clearance. Orders for 40 such aircraft have been placed with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, the state-owned manufacturer. The operational clearance is expected to come through next month, which will set in the motion the process of induction of the jets. â€œHopefully, the first squadron of the LCA would be formed by the end of next year at Sulur,â€ Barbora said. The induction into the IAF fleet is expected to start in the middle of 2011. Barbora conceded that the aircraft being developed since mid-1980s had been readied a â€œlittle lateâ€ but insisted that it was helping India achieve its goal of designing and developing a fighter aircraft indigenously. To tackle â€œteething problemsâ€, the aircraft will be kept briefly after its induction at the IAF base in Bangalore, where Hindustan Aeronautics is also based. â€œInitially, for the sake of stability, the aircraft will be based in Bangalore itself. Hopefully, the teething problems, which will be there, would be resolved,â€ Barbora said.