Given the title of “emerging leader” in the world, the incredible role of Indian defence system has been highlighted now and then. But the feat achieved has to highlight the importance of international relations which India displays not only with the intra-continental nations but inter-continental nations as well. The strategic partnerships and cooperation in the field of defence with Russia, USA, Israel, France to say few have been very crucial in Indian defence sector development.
With the import of advanced technology from developed nations and incorporation of these with the indigenous activities under the ambit of “make in India” along with buy (Global) schemes have helped India to deepen its roots in defence sector at global level. This has also attracted the demands of neighbouring nations for the procurement of defence equipment made in India, which has not only benefitted the economy but also enhanced the diplomatic position of India. Important defence deals for India are approved by defence acquisition council (DAC), which is a steering body in procurements for defence sector headed by Defence minister. Some of the important defence deals in 2018 are as follows:
- Defence Ministry has given approval for procurement of 131 Barak Missiles for Indian Navy.
131 surface to air missiles (SAM), to be bought from Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Ltd for Rs. 460 crore.
To be installed as ship-borne anti-missile defence system on all frontline warships.
- Nod of Defence Ministry to purchase Precision-Guided munitions (PGM).
240 KAB-1500 PGMs to be purchased from Rosoboronexport of Russia worth Rs. 1,254 crore. A variant of KAB PGMs, that has been employed by Su-30 fighter jets, will improve offensive capabilities of IAF.
- India’s GSL (Goa Shipyard Limited) has delivered AOPV to Sri Lankan Navy
Advanced Offshore Patrol Vessel (AOPV) delivery is a part of one of the largest export contracts under the significant defence cooperation between India and Sri Lanka.
SLNS Sayurala was first in the series of AOPV delivered in July 2017.
Sri Lanka to purchase :
2 more OPVs
2 fast missile vessels
- Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved procurement of Calibre Guns for Indian Navy.
India has approved purchase of 127 mm calibre guns with engagement range of 24 Km with further extendable feature based on ERGM (Extended Range Gun Munitions). Guns are to be purchased from BAE system of USA under the Buy (Global) category worth Rs. 3,000 crore that would be installed in new ships to support naval gunfire operations.
- S-400 Triumf air defence Missile systems
Price negotiations with Russia for procuring S-400 Triumf air defence missile systems for IAF have been concluded with deal announcement to take place in October 2018.
Being referred to as SA-21 Growler by NATO, S-400 is most advanced long range defence system which is manufactured by Almaz-Antey.
- US government has given its consent over sale of AH-64E Apache Helicopters to India
India to get multi-role combat helicopters from US to strengthen its defence capability enabling it to counter ground-armored threats. The deal of $930 million includes 6 Apache helicopters with advanced weapon systems, night fighting features. Deal also includes rockets, 180 hellfire Longbow air to surface anti-armor missiles, 90 R-3 hellfire II air to surface missiles, 200 Stinger air to air missiles, 30 mm cannons and ammunition from contractors like Lockheed martin, Longbow, Raytheon general and Boeing.
- India planning to purchase NASAMS-II from US
India and US are in dialogues to procure advanced air defence system NASAMS-II ( national advanced surface to air missile system-II) worth $ 1 billion. It is upgraded version of NASAM by Raytheon in partnership with KONGSBERG Defence and Aerospace of Norway. It is armed with 3-D Sentinel radar, short and medium range missiles, launchers, fire distribution centres and command and control units to detect track and shoot down air threats. It is to be deployed to protect and prevent 9/11 kind of attacks on Delhi.
- Israel navy to procure Indo-Israel made Barak 8 defence missile system
Barak-8 known as LR-SAM/MR-SAM is an operational air and missile defence system, used by Indian navy, air force and Israel navy.
Missile is 4.5 m long with maximum speed of Mach 2, operational range of 70 Km (increased to 100 Km) with high degree of maneuverability.
Provides broad aerial and point defence, defence against short to long range airborne threats will be jointly developed by IAI, DRDO, Elta systems and Rafael as major contractors.
- DAC Nod to procurement of24 multi role helicopters for Indian Navy
Indian government to sign contract worth $1.8 billion with US based aviation giant Lockheed Martin to purchase 24 MH-60R/seahawk multi-mission helicopters.
Anti-submarine helicopters are integral to frontline warships like aircraft carriers, destroyers frigates and corvettes which will replace 3 decades old Sea King helicopters by British.
- INDIA, US Signs COMCASA
This deal will help to india to get highly encrypted communication system to be installed in the military equipments to be purchased by India from US that include C-130 J, C-17, P-18 aircraft, apache and Chinook helicopters.
With the increased progress and innovation, India is now capable of guarding its territory air, water and land inclusively, with more of indigenously developed defence equipments. Manufacturing of the defence platforms in the domestic market and promoting India as a defence equipment manufacturer has been facilitated by the “Strategic partnership model” which is a collaboration between Indian strategic partners and foreign original equipment manufacturer (OEP). The facility will support the long term Indian vision of self-sufficiency and setting a production hub for defence equipments.
Apart from this, various military exercises such as Maitree, Indra, Malabar, RIMPAC, Harimau Shakti to name few are also important for testing its compatibility in competitive environment. The procurement from outside and indigenous development of high-tech defence platforms will help India to be in a position at par with immediate nations posing threat to India’s security in all domains be it air, water or land.