₹2.23 lakh crore to buy 97 Tejas jets, 156 Prachand helicopters
The Union government on Thursday gave preliminary approval to defense acquisition projects worth 2.23 lakh crore, including the purchase of 97 Tejas light combat aircraft and 156 Prachand combat helicopters, in a major step toward significantly improving the armed forces’ combat capabilities.
Approval of Defense Acquisition Projects:
- The Union government has given preliminary permission to defense acquisition projects worth Rs2.23 Lakh crore.
- Among the initiatives are the acquisition of 97 Tejas light combat aircraft and 156 Prachand combat helicopters.
Decision of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC):
- The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) approved these projects, which were chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
- This decision comes amid a lengthy military confrontation between India and China in eastern Ladakh.
Domestic Procurement Emphasis:
- According to the Defence Ministry, 98% of overall procurement will be derived from domestic industries.
- This is consistent with the Indian defense industry’s goal of establishing self-reliance (aatmanirbharta).
Boost to the Indian Defense sector:
- The government anticipates that these acquisitions will provide a significant boost to the Indian defense sector.
- Modernization is demonstrated by upgrading the Su-30 fighter fleet and acquiring advanced weaponry.
- The acquisition of naval assets, such as anti-ship missiles, strengthens India’s maritime defensive capabilities.
- The investment is designed to boost the domestic defense industry while also encouraging innovation and growth.
- The expansion of the defense sector is expected to result in job creation and economic advantages.
Upgradation of Su-30 Fighter Fleet:
- The DAC authorized a proposal by the Indian Air Force to update its Su-30 fighter fleet, with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. in charge of this
- The Sukhoi Su-30MKI is a two-seater, twinjet multirole air superiority fighter developed by Russian aircraft manufacturer Sukhoi and built under licence by India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited for the Indian Air Force.
- A variant of the Sukhoi Su-30, it is a heavy, all-weather, long-range fighter.
Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for Anti-Tank Munitions:
- AoN was granted for the procurement of two types of anti-tank munitions: type-2 and type-3 area denial munition (ADM).
- Anti-tank guided missiles are designed to destroy heavily armored military vehicles.
Approvals for Navy Acquisitions:
- The DAC approved the Navy’s acquisition and integration of an automatic target tracker (ATT) and a digital basaltic computer (DBC) for T-90 tanks.
- The Navy’s procurement of medium-range anti-ship missiles (MRAShM), a major offensive armament for Indian naval ships, has been approved.
Procurement of Light Combat Helicopters and Aircraft:
- AoN was granted for the purchase of Light Combat Helicopters for the Indian Air Force and Army.
- AoN was also granted to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for a Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mk-1A for the IAF under the Buy (Indian-IDDM) category.
Tejas Aircraft Acquisition:
- The government had previously agreed to a 48,000-crore contract with HAL to purchase 83 Tejas MK-1A jets for the IAF.
- The extra sanction for 97 Tejas light combat aircraft boosts the IAF’s overall number of Tejas aircraft to 180.