Proposal worth Rs 28000 Cr cleared by Defence Acquisition Council
Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) headed by Defence Minister cleared a proposal worth Rs 28000 cr. According to the Ministry of Defence, the proposal possesses indigenously developed and manufactured weapons and platforms worth Rs 25000 crore. Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) developed Airborne Early Warning System (AWACS) and modular bridges for the Indian Army, which comes under the indigenous design and development category were also approved by the DAC.
The AWACS system will be developed by the DRDO under a project worth approximately 10,500 crores in which six Air India planes will be acquired and send to the original manufacturers so that the modification and alteration in the design can be done.
The Modular Bridges are used mainly by the infantry arm of the Indian Army so that assault crossings can be undertaken rapidly and vital lives and military routes can be restored. The all-encompassing design also offers rapid replacement of civilian infrastructure in combat and peacetime disaster relief.
Softwares in the Rafales will be upgraded
The French Origin Rafale Aircraft is capable of firing destructive missiles like Meteor missiles and Scalp Missiles. To make the missile more effective, software on the aircraft has been upgraded so that the missile can hit the target 4000 metres above sea level. The missile can carry 450 kg warheads which can hit a target 350 km away from the firing point.
Before the upgradation, the missile was capable of hitting the target at a 2000 meter altitude. The upgradation is been conducted by the missile manufacturer MBDA in consultation with top officials of the Indian Airforce.
India has ordered 36 Rafale jet, of which some has landed at Ambala Airbase, some are still in France providing training to the IAF pilots and three of which will be delivered after the Republic Day. The complete fleet of the aircraft will be handed over to IAF at the end of the year 2021. Along with the Ambala Airbase, the Hasimara Airbase will be utilized to station the remaining jets.
The beyond visual range air to air missile, Meteor, possesses a range of 100 km. Along with Meteor and SCALP, the fighter is also capable of hitting the HAMMER missile. These missiles will be used to destroy enemy infrastructure, power stations, ammunition depots, ships, submarines, etc.
Though China and Pakistan possess air launched cruise missiles, the SCALP is a unique missile that comes under the category fire and forgets. To avoid detection from enemy radars, the missile travels 100-120 feet above the ground (terrain hugging role) which eventually helps missiles to get rid of jamming systems.
Maritime Theatre Command (MTC) expected at the end of 2021
The first of its kind Maritime Theatre Command of Indian Armed forces is to be launched in the year 2021. It will include all the three naval commands, i.e., Western, Eastern and Southern, and the Tri service command, Andaman & Nicobar Command.
India possesses a coastline of more than 7000 km. Also, the 7th largest nation by area consists of more than 1300 island territories under its jurisdiction. As the area increases threats posed to areas simultaneously increase. As India is facing a land standoff with China in the northern border it becomes crucial for the Indian Navy to be prepared for any assault on the maritime security in the peninsular region of the nation.
Considering the diversity of terrains and the level of tasks, it becomes crucial for the security of the nation that every stakeholder who is involved in the defense of the country to come together and fight as a strong and united force. It not only improves the interoperability among the forces but also intends to use the available resources with their full potential.
This can be appropriately done only when all defense forces work, conceptualize, and organize a structure under one leadership. The proposed Maritime Theatre Command is being established with an aim to assimilate the assets of the Indian Airforce, Indian Navy, Indian Army, and Indian Coast Guard. All the forces work under the Indian Defence Ministry.
The Maritime Theatre Command will report to the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s Commission led by Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat. Assets of Western and Eastern Coast Guards like the patrol vessels, helicopters, etc. will be accountable to MTC. Similarly, Assets of Southern Air Command like Jamnagar based Jaguar Squadron, Thanjavur based Sukhoi-30MKi fighters and BrahMos cruise missile will report to MTC.
In this way, the Chief of Defence Staff will be able to perform his duties of ensuring integration among the three services. A similar kind of land theatre command will be helpful to counter adversaries roaming around the Northern border.