Several countries have shown interest in procuring the indigenously built multirole fighter jet, Tejas M1A, and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will soon get orders from other nations, said Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. He was speaking at the inauguration of HAL’s second LCA (Light Combat Aircraft) production line in Bengaluru on Tuesday (February 2).
Singh said India cannot afford to remain dependent on other countries for fulfilling its defence requirements. “Despite the COVID pandemic, you (HAL) have received ₹48,000 crore order from the armed forces,” Rajnath Singh was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. The defence minister also said the government will bring orders for the HAL.
Talking about Tejas, a light combat aircraft (LCA), Singh said it is a matter of pride that the fighter aircraft is made in India. “Tejas is better than its foreign competitors in engine capacity, radar system, beyond visual range (missile), air-to-air refuelling and maintenance. Most importantly, it is cheaper than most foreign LCAs,” he said.
Rajnath Singh will attend the Aero India show scheduled to be held from February 3-5 at the Yelahanka Air Force Station in Bengaluru.
The Union Budget has allocated ₹4.78 lakh crore for defence for the year 2021-22 against ₹4.71 lakh crore last year. While this is just about 1.4 per cent increase, the government has allocated 19 per cent for capital expenditure.