Amid Ladakh border standoff, Defence ministry to purchase 21 MiG-29s, 12 Su-30 MKI aircraft
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) on Thursday approved the proposal for procurement of 21 MiG-29s along with a proposal to upgrade the Indian Air Force's existing MiG-29 aircraft. In addition, the MoD has also given the green light to the procurement of 12 Su-30 MKI aircraft.
While the MiG-29 procurement and upgradation from Russia are estimated to cost Rs 7418 crores, the Su-30 MKI will be procured from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) at an estimated cost of Rs 10,730 crores.
Both proposals for the procurement of new aircraft and the third proposal for up-gradation among others were approved in the Defence Acquisition Council Meeting held on July 2. In total, proposals amounting to an estimated Rs 38,900 crores were approved during the meeting.
In a press statement issued on Thursday, the MoD said, "In the current situation and the need to strengthen the Armed Forces for the Defence of our borders and in line with our Prime Minister's clarion call for 'Atma Nirbhar Bharat' the Defence Acquisition Council in its meeting of 2nd July 2020 held under the Chairmanship of Raksha Mantri Rajnath Singh accorded approval for Capital acquisitions of various platforms and equipment required by the Indian Armed Forces. Proposals for an approximate cost of Rs 38900 Cr were approved."
The statement goes further to state that approvals include acquisitions of Rs 31,130 crores from the Indian industry. "A large number of these projects have been made possible due to Transfer of Technology by DRDO to the Indigenous Industry. These include Pinaka ammunitions, BMP armament upgrades, and Software Defined Radios for the Army, Long Range Land Attack Cruise Missile Systems, and Astra Missiles for Navy and Air Force. The cost of these Design and Development proposals is in the range of Rs 20400 cr," the statement added.
In its statement, the MoD also mentioned how the Pinaka missile systems "will enable raising additional regiments over and above the ones already inducted, the addition of Long Range Land Attack Missile Systems having a firing range of 1000 Km to the existing arsenal will bolster the attack capabilities of the Navy and the Air Force".