While many of us understand your concern there is no need to go hyper.Won't be surprised even if it equalizes or exceeds
160x JF-17... 100+ more planned
& the probable shocker coming in 50-80× J-10C
The prob is they are getting aircraft at 25-35 million a piece
& we are getting at $90-100 million a piece... even our indigenous TEJAS MK1A will come at $55-60 million a piece
They are focusing on an aircraft with moderate capabilities but in adequate numbers to cover all fronts
Our armed forces long back were stripped of decision making powers. how? when you don't control the expenditure... your decisions have shit value until the babu & neta are pleased
We have already established a technological lead over the PAF with the acquisition of the Rafales. Even the F16 Block 52 cannot match the Rafale. Leave alone the rest of the Pak air force including the JF17 Thunder/Blunder.
The PAF knows this and they are spooked. Explains their desperate cries to their daddy China for J10c fighters. But even their J10c will fall short of the Rafale.
Also our large fleet of Su30mki's are yet to reach their full potential. Though having larger RCS than the Rafale it is a force multiplier. It only needs the long pending upgrade. An AESA radar, new long range air to air missiles which exceed the performance of the AIM120C,better avionics and EW and possibly an Spectra like suite to mislead the enemy radar and look smaller on their radar screen. An engine upgrade may be too expensive.
The much talked about Super Sukhoi project will breathe new life into the Su30mki's.
We have an fairly advanced indigenous aerospace industry with the capability to design modern combat aircraft. Pakistan is miles behind in this area and can only suckle mother China's teats. It is still a nursing baby.
Also we have an access to Western technology be it from Europe or the US. Though it may not be state of the art nevertheless it helps us to climb the aerospace learning curve faster. Pakistan has been denied access to modern Western technology and rely exclusively on China.
And the reality is that China is behind the West in aerospace technology. A situation that will not change in the near future.
We have an ambitious fighter aircraft development programme.
The LCA Tejas mk1 is only the beginning. The LCA mk1a has several new technologies including an AESA radar. Its radar will be superior to whatever AESA radar that the Chinese put on the JF17 or the J10C(assuming that Pakistan acquires it).
We hold the edge in advanced Air to Air missiles having access to the Meteor. Neither the PAF nor the PLAAF can match the Meteor in the foreceable future.
As our indigenous fighter aircraft programme progresses the LCA mk2 or the MWF
will further increase the lead. Not to mention the AMCA, TEDBF and ORCA.
The deficiency in numbers will be addressed with the increasing production of indigenous fighters of different classes. Maybe in about an decade there will be a transformation.
But for the present we may need more Rafales to meet the challenge from the PAF and the PLAAF. It may be expensive but unavoidable till our indigenous fighters start coming in numbers.
I believe the future of the IAF is rosy and there is no need to look at the PAF as a tiger when in actual they are more of a domestic cat.