Lately the month of December have proved to be one of the most colorful months for the Defense industry of India. This month saw a strong push to the Make in India Initiative.
The major platforms that came were:
- LCA Mk1A
Last month in November second week a news popped up out of blues saying that the IAF is not happy with the LCA and “LCA is not FIT to protect Indian skies”. Hence the airforce is MULLING the decision to buy further LCAs.
However all the Crap was cut when on 20/12/2017 when IAF finally issued RFP for 83 MK-1A to HAL. The project cost is expected to be over Rs 60,000 crore.
As for the cost :
Before we start saying that tejas mk1a will cost near to F-35 or some other air craft, we should be very clear with the fact that MK1a’s actual cost CAN’T be simple maths that we just divide the cost by number of aircrafts. It is like fooling yourself. There are following reasons to do so:
- Mk1a is yet to come, it wont have a prototype but a pre-production model by 2019, hence money is needed for R&D.
- It will have foreign AESA radar, probably ELTA-2052, but not sure about it as HAL has given out tender for it hence noe there are many top-notch companies are available with their AESA radars. Money needed here too.
- HAL will be setting up its factory, which would one of the biggest factory of HAL solely for TEJAS in MP or UP. Huge amount of money will be required here.
- It has to be equipped with top of the line machinery to maximize production. Money needed here too.
- They have to hire people from a peon to highly qualified engineers and managers. Who would pay them?
- Lastly since the factory will be new it got to be connected with other factories by HAL and other private sector like L&T etc to transport the parts. Money required for setting up huge logistics network.
Hence I would like to ask those people accusing that it cost near 85 mn$, who would pay for the above 6 points?
Those people or from the money i.e 60000 cr granted by GoI?
Still if we add up these numbers Tejas is by far the cheapest 4.5 gen aircraft programme on this planet.
Lastly, remember that production of anything in mass cant be simple maths there are hundreds of factor that decides the final cost of product.
LIGHT COMBAT HELICOPTER
The IAF and IA both had issued a RFP to HAL for 15 LSPs of the LCH. The initial orders of which will include 179 LCH for both the IA and IAF. In coming future the Attack chopper inventory of India will be probably the only arm which will have more than 70% indigenous platforms such as near 100 Rudra ALH, 180 LCH other than that 33 Apaches.
After 30 years of silence in artillery induction. The ATAGS which is certainly the big boy of all artillery guns procured recently made, have got a order for 40 LSP production. This will be made by TATA, Kalyani and GCF, Jabalpur. The guns will go there winter trials in Sikkim in coming days to come. The initial order after the trials will consist of 2000 pieces of ATAGS.
The QR-SAM was tested third time successfully few days back. This was the third test this yeat of this newly developed. Though not much is known on what parameters were the missiles tested, it was announced succesfull by MOD and DRDO. In coming days we can see more such tests which will pave way for speedy productionisation of this “MISSION MODE” category project.