In the midst of India’s tense border standoff with China, the defence ministry on Thursday (July 2) approved procurement of a number of frontline fighter jets, missile systems, and other platforms at a cost of ₹38,900 crore to bolster the combat capability of the armed forces, officials said.
They said 21 MiG-29 fighter jets are being bought from Russia while 12 Su-30 MKI aircraft will be procured from Russia. The ministry has also approved a separate proposal to upgrade existing 59 MiG-29 aircraft.
The decisions were taken at a meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
The procurement of 21 MiG-29 and upgrading of the existing fleet of MiG-29 are estimated to cost the government ₹7,418 crore while purchase of 12 new Su-30 MKI from the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd will be made at a cost of ₹10,730 crore, the officials said.
The DAC also approved procurement of long range land attack cruise missile systems with a range of 1,000 KM and Astra Missiles for Navy and Air Force.
The officials said cost of these design and development proposals is in the range of ₹20,400 crore.
“While acquisition of Pinaka missile systems will enable raising additional regiments over and above the ones already inducted, 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,” said a defence ministry official.
“Similarly induction of Astra Missiles having beyond visual range capability will serve as a force multiplier and immensely add to the strike capability of the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force,” he said.