India To Double-Down On Buying Indigenous Weapons To Utilise Un-Spent Defence Budget Amid Western Sanctions On Russia

India To Double-Down On Buying Indigenous Weapons To Utilise Un-Spent Defence Budget Amid Western Sanctions On Russia

by Ujjwal Shrotryia - Wednesday, March 15, 2023 01:18 PM IST
India To Double-Down On Buying Indigenous Weapons To Utilise Un-Spent Defence Budget Amid Western Sanctions On RussiaHAL's indigenously developed Light Utility Helicopter (Image via Twitter)

India is buying Made-in-India weapon systems with its un-utilised defence capital funds as it faces delays in making Rupee-Rouble payments for weapons purchased from Russia due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, reported The Indian Express.

Official reports state that the military services have not fully used their capital budgets this fiscal year, with a significant amount of unspent funds being Rouble payments of Rs 28,000 crore for Russian-procured weapons.

New acquisitions are being considered and orders may be placed before the end of this financial year this month pending approval from the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) or the Ministry of Defence (MoD), officials said.

Potential orders according to the report includes five Fleet Support Ships (FSS), six Next Generation Offshore Patrol Vessels (NGOPVs), and six Next Generation Missile Vessels (NGMVs), all of which will be constructed by Indian shipyards.

Earlier, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved six NGOPVs in 2018. These vessels will have modern sensors to perform various operational functions and enhance maritime security.

Cochin Shipyard also won the bid to construct six NGMVs for Rs 10,000 crore in 2021.

Furthermore, there are other projects in the pipeline as well, including the Next Generation Maritime Mobile Coastal Batteries (NGMMCBs) which are equipped with BrahMos surface-to-surface supersonic cruise missiles. 

BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited, a joint venture company between India and Russia, has developed and manufactured NGMMCBs in India.

The DAC in 2019 approved the project to place NGMMCBs along the coast. 

Additionally, contracts for Lynx U2 — a naval gun fire control system — may also be signed soon for the frontline warships.

Earlier (December 2020), the MoD has contracted Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) to acquire 10 Lynx U2 Fire Control Systems.

The MoD signed another contract worth Rs 934 crore with HSL for refitting the third Kilo Class diesel-electric submarine, Sindhukirti. However, the Navy is now seeking another submarine refit contract to be added to the pipeline, the report said.

Additionally, CCS approved a contract with L&T for acquiring three cadet training ships valued at Rs 3,108.09 crore.

Apart from the Navy, the IAF also plans to acquire domestic Medium and High-Power Radars to detect and track airborne targets, including Fighter Jets and slow-moving objects, as well as close-range weapons.

Just a week ago, MoD signed a contract with Hindustan Aeronautics limited (HAL) to buy six Dornier-228 aircraft for the IAF at a cost of Rs 667 crore for transportation and communication duties.

Moreover, the MoD bought 70 HTT-40 Basic Trainer Aircraft from HAL for the IAF at a cost of Rs 6,828.36 crore.

The Indian Express report also adds that the Army is also planning to acquire Project Himshakti — an Electronic Warfare System for mountains — an Air Defence Control and reporting system, and a communications satellite, as well.

Last year (2020), the Defence Acquistion Council (DAC) approved the procurement of GSAT 7B communication satellite for the Army.

Officials also stated that the armed forces might surrender a large portion of their capital budget, even if all discussed contracts are approved.

Intern at Swarajya. Writes on Indian Military and Defence.
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