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Evening Check-In: India's Military Base In Mauritius, HAL Prachand Lands Near China Border, Govt Greenlights IT Hardware Imports

Amarnath Govindarajan

Nov 01, 2023, 06:53 PM | Updated 06:53 PM IST


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🚁 LCH Prachand's High-Altitude Feat

Light combat helicopter. (Indian Air Force/Twitter)
Light combat helicopter. (Indian Air Force/Twitter)

India's indigenous 'tank-killer' helicopter, LCH Prachand, lands near China border at a high-altitude advanced landing ground (ALG).

Recent Action: Just a day earlier, it showcased firepower with its 70 mm rockets and 20 mm guns.

Backdrop: This is part of Exercise Poorvi Akash by IAF's Eastern Air Command. The helicopters, stationed at Missamari military base, landed opposite the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

  • Just a day earlier, it showcased firepower with its 70 mm rockets and 20 mm guns.

Why It Matters: LCH Prachand is unique. It's the only chopper designed for high-altitude operations, capable of functioning above 5,000-6,000 meters with significant offensive load.

  • It's proven, landing at Siachen (4,700 meters) with a 500 kg payload.

Orders & Future: IAF and Indian Army have already ordered 15 LCHs worth Rs 3,837 crore. Plans are underway for 156 more, split between the army (90) and air force (66).

India's Strategic Move in the Indian Ocean

North Agalega Island in the south-west Indian Ocean.
North Agalega Island in the south-west Indian Ocean.

India nears completion of a military base on Agalega Island, Mauritius, countering China's growing presence in the Indian Ocean.

Facilities: Essential infrastructure like a jetty, runways, and aircraft hangars are now in place. Satellite imagery confirms this.

  • India might deploy Boeing Poseidon 8I aircraft at this facility to monitor Chinese PLA Navy movements, especially their submarines.

Background: India began this construction after a 2015 MoU with Mauritius to boost sea and air transport on Agalega Island.

  • Officially, the base is to enhance Mauritius' maritime security.

  • Recent satellite images show hangars suitable for India's P-8I submarine-hunting aircraft.

  • India has previously deployed P-8I aircraft in the region, including joint patrols with French Navy from La Reunion Island.

China's Play: China has been increasing its footprint in the western Indian Ocean, from its military base in Djibouti to heavy infrastructure investments in Africa.

  • A 2022 US report highlighted China's capability to accommodate aircraft carriers and submarines at its Djibouti base.

🖥️ Modi Govt Greenlights IT Hardware Imports

A laptop manufacturing facility in India.
A laptop manufacturing facility in India.

Out of 111 requests, the Modi government has approved 110 for importing laptops, computers, and related IT hardware.

Big Names on Board: Companies like Dell, Apple India, HP, Lenovo, ASUS, IBM, Samsung, Xiaomi, Cisco, Siemens, and Bosch have secured these approvals.

  • Simplified Process: Last month, the government introduced an 'authorization' process detailing quantity and value, aiming to monitor IT hardware inflow without market disruption.

Govt's Take: An official stated all major IT hardware companies have received import authorizations, with no pending requests currently.

Scope: The new system covers laptops, PCs, tablets, microcomputers, mainframes, and specific data processing machines, bolstering India's trusted supply chain security.


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