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A short brief about India's latest weapons acquisition plan

In a recent meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council, India decided to carry out a significant capital procurement deal. Headed by the Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the meeting held on Thursday, November 28, 2019 finalized an approval to procure defence equipment and weapons estimated to cost the country around Rs 22,800 crore. It is quite interesting to note some of the top of the list items that are on the agenda of the capital procurement deal finalized now.

Some of the important highlights of the capital procurement include six additional P-8I long-range patrol aircraft for the Indian Navy that will be supplied by the US, additional Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF) that are made indigenously.

During a review of the successfully accomplished Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) program championed indigenously, the DAC perceived the Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for the purchase of additional AWACS aircraft. In a statement made to the press, the Ministry remarked, “The mission system and sub-systems for these aircraft would be indigenously designed, developed and integrated into the main platform by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).”

At present, the Indian Air Force has three units of Israeli Phalcon AWACS and three units of smaller indigenous Netra AEW&C systems that are found mounted on Embraer aircraft.

The aerial engagement with the Pakistan Air Force that took place a day after the Balakot air strike was an eye opener that stressed on the importance of augmenting the number of our force multipliers. These platforms are capable of on-board command and control and ‘early warning’, which can be of immense help to the Indian Air Force to achieve an effective dominance in the air space within a very short while of time. The new systems that will be procured will be mounted on the Airbus aircraft.

Indigenous design ::

The Defence Acquisition Council also approved the idea of indigenously designing, developing and manufacturing ‘thermal imaging night sights’ for assault rifles. The Ministry said they will be manufactured by the Indian Private Industry partners and will be used by the troops arrayed on the front line.

The DAC also approved purchasing twin-engine heavy helicopters for the use of Coast Guard. The council said these aircraft will prove to be of immense help to the Coast Guard on its different missions aimed at preventing maritime terrorism and rescue operations.

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