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Corvettes, Su-30 engines: Rs 76,390-crore procurement boost to Indian industry

To provide a boost to the Indian defense industry and “reduce foreign spending significantly,” the Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved proposals for the procurement of military equipment and platforms including eight next generation corvettes for the Indian Navy, wheeled armored fighting vehicles and bridge laying tanks for the Indian Army, and manufacture of aero-engines for the Su-30 MKI fighter aircraft of the Indian Air Force.

In a statement Monday, the Ministry of Defense said the DAC, at a meeting chaired by Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, “accorded Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for Capital Acquisition Proposals of the Armed Forces amounting to Rs 76,390 crore under ‘Buy (Indian) ‘, ‘Buy & Make (Indian)’ and ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’ categories”. This, it said, follows Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s “clarion call for ‘Aatmanirbharta’.”

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The planned next generation corvettes will be the first time that the warships will be designed entirely by the Navy’s Directorate of Naval Design and executed by an Indian shipyard through a competitive bid — this means that the private industry will also be allowed to bid, unlike earlier when a shipyard was nominated. The new warships will eventually replace the Khukri and Kora class corvettes.

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“For the Indian Navy, the DAC accorded AoN for procurement of Next Generation Corvettes (NGC) at an estimated cost of approx. Rs 36,000 crore. These NGCs will be versatile platforms for a variety of roles viz. surveillance missions, escort operations, deterrence, Surface Action Group (SAG) operations, Search & Attack and Coastal Defense. These NGCs would be constructed based on the new in-house design of the Indian Navy using the latest technology of ship building and would contribute to further the Government’s initiative of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region),” the Ministry said.

“For the Indian Army, the DAC accorded fresh AoNs for procurement of Rough Terrain Fork Lift Trucks (RTFLTs), Bridge Laying Tanks (BLTs), Wheeled Armored Fighting Vehicles (Wh AFVs) with Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs) and Weapon Locating Radars (WLRs) through domestic sources with emphasis on indigenous design and development,” it said.

“The DAC accorded AoNs for manufacture of Dornier aircraft and Su-30 MKI aero-engines by the Navratna CPSE M/s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited with focus on enhancing indigenisation, particularly in indigenising aero-engine material,” the Ministry said.

“In pursuance of the Government’s vision for digital transformation in Defense, ‘Digital Coast Guard’ project under ‘Buy (Indian)’ category has been approved by the DAC. Under this project, a pan India secure network for digitizing of various surface and aviation operations, logistics, finance and HR processes in Coast Guard will be established,” it said.

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