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   ** Official Media Partner: DEFEXPO INDIA 2018 & DSA 2018 SHOW PREVIEWS: 15 MAR - 15 APRIL 2018 SPECIAL COLLECTORS' ISSUE **        INDIA’s Leading & Oldest DEFENCE & Aerospace Magazine - 49th Year in Defence Publishing:44th Year of Monthly Publication       

LATEST ISSUES

Top Stories

Raksha Mantri Visits Forward Army & Air Force Bases in Assam & Arunachal Pradesh

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman visited the Forward Army Posts in Arunachal Pradesh and Air Force Base in Eastern Assam. The visit to the Forward Army & Air Force Bases followed her visits to Bomdilla and Itanagar in Arunachal Pradesh.

Raksha Mantri Visits Forward Army & Air Force Bases in Assam & Arunachal Pradesh
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman visited the Forward Army Posts in Arunachal Pradesh and Air Force Base in Eastern Assam. The visit to the Forward Army & Air Force Bases followed her visits to Bom...
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Defence Minister Visits CVRDE

The Raksha Mantri Nirmala Sitharaman made her maiden visit to Combat Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (CVRDE), Avadi, Chennai. The RM was taken to various Technology Centres by Director, CVRDE to witness the products and systems/technologies developed by CVRDE.

Defence Minister Visits CVRDE
The Raksha Mantri Nirmala Sitharaman made her maiden visit to Combat Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (CVRDE), Avadi, Chennai.
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DRDO Conducts Successful Flight Trial of Nirbhay Sub-Sonic Long-Range Cruise Missile

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) achieved yet another feat on 7th November with the successful test flight of NIRBHAY - India’s first indigenously designed and developed Long-Range Sub-Sonic Cruise Missile, which can be deployed from multiple platforms.

DRDO Conducts Successful Flight Trial of Nirbhay Sub-Sonic Long-Range Cruise Missile
Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) achieved yet another feat on 7th November with the successful test flight of NIRBHAY - India’s first indigenously designed and developed Long-Rang...
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Successful Firing of BrahMos Air- Launched Missile from Su-30MKI

IAF successfully fired the BrahMos Air Version Anti-Ship Missile from its Frontline Su-30MKI Fighter aircraft off the Eastern Coast. The Air-Launched BrahMos Missile is a 2.5 ton Supersonic Air-to-Surface Cruise Missile with ranges of more than 400 kms.

Successful Firing of BrahMos Air- Launched Missile from Su-30MKI
IAF successfully fired the BrahMos Air Version Anti-Ship Missile from its Frontline Su-30MKI Fighter aircraft off the Eastern Coast. The launch from the aircraft was smooth and the missile followed t...
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DEFENSE & SECURITY 2017 SHOW REPORT

Defense & Security 2017, the Tri-Services Asian Defence & Security Exhibition & Conference was  held from 6th to 9th November 2017 at IMPACT Exhibition Centre in Bangkok, Thailand, which has positioned itself as a major event in the ASEAN Region. Defense & Security 2017 featured over 400 companies exhibiting from about 50 countries.

DEFENSE & SECURITY 2017 SHOW REPORT
Defense & Security 2017, the Tri-Services Asian Defence & Security Exhibition & Conference was held from 6th to 9th November 2017 at IMPACT Exhibition Centre in Bangkok, Thailand. Defense & Security...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B. S. DHANOA, CHIEF OF THE AIR STAFF

Indian Air Force is going through a Transformation process acquiring state-of-the-art platforms and systems, and through Upgrades, to boost India’s Air Power Dominance capabilities, with Su-30MKIs, Upgraded Mirage 2000s & Jaguars, Rafale MMRCAs, FGFA, LCA Tejas, C-17s, C-130Js, Do-228s, Avro replacement with C295W MTAs, ALH Dhruv, Light Combat Helicopters (LCHs), Mi-17V5s, Chinook Heavy-Lift & Apache Longbow Attack Helicopters, AEW&Cs/AWACS, FRA, Trainers, etc. and various types of Radar Systems, Weapons Systems and SAGW Systems, either being inducted or in final stages of contract negotiations. Chanakya Interviewed AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B. S. DHANOA, CHIEF OF THE AIR STAFF (CAS), who covered almost all the IAF programmes of Modernisation, including Fighters & Weapons, Upgrades, AWACS/AEW&Cs, Refuellers, Trainers, Transporters, Akash Missile System & BrahMos-A Missile, Astra BVRAAM, UAS/RPAs, etc. We feature the Exclusive Interview of the Air Chief with Chanakya. Excerpts:

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B. S. DHANOA, CHIEF OF THE AIR STAFF: “IAF is Progressing Well on a Capability Driven Modernisation Plan”
Indian Air Force is going through a Transformation process acquiring state-of-the-art platforms and systems, and through Upgrades, to boost India’s Air Power Dominance capabilities. Chanakya Intervie...
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DUBAI AIR SHOW REPORT

The 15th Dubai Air Show 2017 was held at DWC Dubai from 12th to 16th November 2017. The Dubai Air Show had 159 Aircraft displayed, with above 1,200 exhibitors from about 60 countries. Dassault Aviation’s Rafale & Mirage 2000-9 Fighters; Saab Gripen; Boeing’s F/A-18 Super Hornet & F-15 Fighters, Apache & Chinook Helicopters; Lockheed Martin’s F-16 and C-130J Super Hercules, Sikorsky CH-53K; Airbus Defence & Space’s C295 Airlifters, the Eurofighter Typhoon; Pilatus PC-12NG, were amongst the aircraft presented at Dubai.

DUBAI AIR SHOW REPORT
The 15th Dubai Air Show 2017 was held at DWC Dubai from 12th to 16th November 2017. The Dubai Air Show had 159 Aircraft displayed, with above 1,200 exhibitors from about 60 countries. Dubai Air Show ...
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Next-Generation Rafale Fighters For IAF in 2019

While the Indian Air Force (IAF) will be inducting the Next-Generation Rafale Fighters in the current F3R Standard from September 2019 onwards, the Rafale F4 Standard is to start a six-year Development Phase soon, where new and modern Advanced Combat Missile and Engine Technologies will be introduced. Rafale F4 will include Weapon Integration modifications, including new Variants of Air-to-Air MICA, SCALP and the Nuclear Cruise Missile ASMP-A.

Next-Generation Rafale Fighters For IAF in 2019
While the Indian Air Force (IAF) will be inducting the Next-Generation Rafale Fighters in the current F3R Standard from September 2019 onwards, the Rafale F4 Standard is to start a six-year Developme...
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Airbus Helicopters Offers Complete Know-how for Indian Helicopter Programmes

A select group of Indian journalists were invited to Marignane in France to witness the handing over of the last two AS565 MBe Panther Helicopters to the Mexican Navy. There are three Naval Helicopter programmes in the pipeline in India - the Multi-Role Helicopter (MRH), Naval Utility Helicopter (NUH) and Naval Multi-Role Helicopter (NMRH). Airbus Helicopters, which has Mahindra Aerospace as a ‘Strategic Partner’ in India, is fielding the AS565 MBe Panther for the NUH programme and the helicopter leader is now concentrating on finalising a location for the facility and building an Indian Supply Chain that would eventually form part of the global supply chain in the years to come.

Airbus Helicopters Offers Complete Know-how for Indian Helicopter Programmes
A select group of Indian journalists were invited to Marignane in France to witness the handing over of the last two AS565 MBe Panther Helicopters to the Mexican Navy. There are three Naval Helicopte...
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INS KALVARI SCORPENE-CLASS SUBMARINE COMMISSIONED INTO INDIAN NAVY

The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi commissioned INS Kalvari (S-21), the first of the six Scorpene-Class Submarines built under Project 75 (Kalvari-Class) into the Indian Navy at an impressive ceremony recently held at Naval Dockyard in Mumbai. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Defence, Dr. Subhash Bhamre, National Security Advisior Ajit Kumar Doval, and Admiral Sunil Lanba, the Chief of the Naval Staff were present on this significant occasion.

INS KALVARI SCORPENE-CLASS SUBMARINE COMMISSIONED INTO INDIAN NAVY
The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi commissioned INS Kalvari (S-21), the first of the six Scorpene-Class Submarines built under Project 75 (Kalvari-Class) into the Indian Navy at an impressive...
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67 YEARS: INDIAN NAVY SPECIAL REPORT

The year 2017 has witnessed significant capability accretion through induction of a number of state-of-the-art Combat Platforms into the Indian Navy, including the 3rd Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Corvette INS Kiltan, which has about 80% indigenous content, the Water Jet Fast Attack Craft and Fast Interceptor Craft, Landing Craft Utility Ships, etc. The commissioning of INS Kalvari, the first Ship of Scorpene-Class Submarines, was an important milestone in the indigenous Shipbuilding programme, alongwith the 2nd Scorpene Khanderi undertaking trials, with the Arihant-Class Submarine, will further boost the Indian Navy’s combat potential. The construction of the first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier Vikrant is progressing at Kochi. The Navy is also finalising plans and design for the next Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC-II), said the Navy Chief at the Annual Pre-Navy Day Press Conference. We feature a Special Report on the Indian Navy.

67 YEARS: INDIAN NAVY SPECIAL REPORT
The year 2017 has witnessed significant capability accretion through induction of a number of state-of-the-art Combat Platforms into the Indian Navy, including the 3rd Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Co...
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INTERVIEW IGNS, INDIAN NAVY

Interview of Senior-most serving Submariner - Vice Admiral Srikant, Inspector General Nuclear Submarines (IGNS) on occasion of Submarine Day celebrated on 8th December 2017, when the Indian Navy’s Submarine Arm completed 50 Years of Service.

“P-75(I) RFP Targeted for Mid-2018” - Vice Admiral Srikant, IGNS Indian Navy
Interview of Senior-most serving Submariner - Vice Admiral Srikant, Inspector General Nuclear Submarines (IGNS) on occasion of Submarine Day celebrated on 8th December 2017, when the Indian Navy’s Su...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: NAVY CHIEF

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW:
ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA,
CHIEF OF THE NAVAL STAFF
“Transition Into Modern Multi-
Dimensional Force Commendable”

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA, CHIEF OF THE NAVAL STAFF “Transition Into Modern Multi- Dimensional Force Commendable”
Chanakya Interviewed ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA, Chief of the Naval Staff, covering most aspects of Indian Naval Acquisitions and Force Transformation, including Carriers, Surface Combatants, Submarines & H...
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Indian Air Force Chief Flies Rafale Fighter In France

The Rafale Combat Aircraft will come with various India-specific modifications including Israeli Helmet Mounted Displays, Radar Warning Receivers and Low-Band Jammers, most importantly, delivering nuclear weapons and will be equipped with the latest Missiles and PGMs giving the IAF greater supremacy over rivals. The improvements under the proposed F4 Standard, still under discussion, will reportedly transfer to the IAF’s Rafale Fleet when ready.

Indian Air Force Chief Flies Rafale Fighter In France
The Rafale Combat Aircraft will come with various India-specific modifications. Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa, Chief of the Air Staff was on an official visit to France from 17th to 20th Ju...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: T. Suvarna Raju, Chairman & Managing Director, HAL

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW:
T. Suvarna Raju, Chairman & Managing Director, HAL

“It is Planned to Complete the Order for 40 LCA Mk.1 by 2019-20”

One of the largest Aeronautics Companies in Asia, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) is involved in manufacturing of Aircraft, Navigation and related equipment and is also into Designing, Fabrication and Assembly of Aircraft, Jet Engines, Helicopters and Spare parts. In an Exclusive Interview, T. SUVARNA RAJU, CMD, HAL speaks to Chanakya, updating us on most projects that HAL is currently undertaking.

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: T. Suvarna Raju, Chairman & Managing Director, HAL
One of the largest Aeronautics Companies in Asia, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) is involved in manufacturing of Aircraft, Navigation and related equipment and is also into Designing, Fabrication a...
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INTERVIEW: Brian Sinkiewicz, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems

INTERVIEW: Brian Sinkiewicz, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems

“Fury Light-Weight Precision Guided Glide Weapon is Proven to be Accurate Within One Meter”

Textron Systems’ offers its Aerospace, Defence and Civil customers a fascinating array of Systems and Solutions for Aerospace and Defence applications. At Aero India 2017, Textron Systems is displaying models of Textron Systems' Precision-Guided Munitions, Fury™ Light-Weight Precision-Guided Glide Weapon, which is proven to be accurate within one meter of a designated target and the G-CLAW™ - the Precision-Guided Glide Weapon System that optimizes effects against a broad target set, through utilising Dual-Mode Fuzing - impact or height of burst. BRIAN SINKIEWICZ, Senior VP & GM, Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems, fields questions pertaining to these Precision Weapon Systems. Excerpts:

INTERVIEW: Brian Sinkiewicz, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Textron Systems Weapon & Sensor Systems
Textron Systems’ offers its Aerospace, Defence and Civil customers a fascinating array of Systems and Solutions for Aerospace and Defence applications. At Aero India 2017, Textron Systems is displayi...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B.S. DHANOA

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW:
AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B. S. DHANOA,
CHIEF OF THE AIR STAFF

“IAF is Progressing Towards Complete Network Centric Operations”

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: AIR CHIEF MARSHAL B.S. DHANOA
Indian Air Force is going through a Transformation process acquiring state-of-the-art platforms and systems, and through Upgrades, to boost India’s Air Power Dominance capabilities, with Su-30MKIs, U...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA, CHIEF OF THE NAVAL STAFF

ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA assumed Command of the Indian Navy, as the 23rd Chief of the Naval Staff on 31st May 2016. A Navigation and Direction Specialist, Admiral Lanba served as the Navigation and Operations Officer onboard numerous ships. His sea tenure included Command of INS Kakinada, a Mine Counter Measure Vessel, INS Himgiri Frigate, INS Ranvijay, a Kashin-Class Destroyer and INS Mumbai, the indigenous Delhi-Class Destroyer. He was also Executive Officer of Aircraft Carrier INS Viraat and the Fleet Operations Officer of the Western Fleet. He has been the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command, and Commandant of the National Defence College. As the Vice Chief of the Naval Staff, the Admiral streamlined the framework for transformation of Indian Navy's combat capabilities and infrastructure development as well as Tri-Services initiatives towards enhancing integration and jointness. Prior to taking over as the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Lanba has been Flag Officer C-in-C of the Southern and Western Naval Commands, wherein he provided impetus to training and skill development, synergising Combat Operations, Coastal Security, Safety and Infrastructure Development. Chanakya Interviewed ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA, covering most aspects of Naval Acquisitions.

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA, CHIEF OF THE NAVAL STAFF: “Modernisation has Transformed Indian Navy Into a Blue Water Force”
ADMIRAL SUNIL LANBA assumed Command of the Indian Navy, as the 23rd Chief of the Naval Staff on 31st May 2016. A Navigation and Direction Specialist, Admiral Lanba served as the Navigation and Operat...
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RAFALE MMRCA CONTRACT SIGNED

India has finally signed the Rafale MMRCA contract for the IAF. A potent nuclear deterrence platform, the Rafales will come equipped with MBDA’s Meteor BVRAAM, Storm Shadow/SCALP & MICA Missiles. The induction of Rafale Fighters will enhance the IAF's strategic reach and provide superior technological edge through Air Dominance. The version of Rafale Fighters being supplied to India will have better operational capabilities than the Rafales operated by other Air Forces with better Radar, better detection and survival features and will have capabilities for operations from high-altitude airfields as well.

India-France Sign Landmark Contract for IAF’s Rafale MMRCA
India has finally signed the Rafale MMRCA contract for the IAF. A potent nuclear deterrence platform, the Rafales will come equipped with MBDA’s Meteor BVRAAM, Storm Shadow/SCALP & MICA Missiles. The...
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TERMA

TERMA SYSTEMS

Terma Strengthens Presence in India
The Denmark based Aerospace, Defence and Security Group Terma, headquartered in Aarhus, Denmark, recently opened its office in India. Internationally, Terma has subsidiaries and operations in The Net...
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INTERVIEW

CHRIS RAO, VICE PRESIDENT,
UTC AEROSPACE SYSTEMS
 

“We Offer Unique Capabilities”
UTC Aerospace Systems (UTAS) is one of the world’s largest suppliers of advanced Aerospace and Defence products, designing, manufacturing and servicing systems and components and provide integrated s...
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INTERVIEW

LOIC PIEDAVACHE, MBDA COUNTRY HEAD, INDIA

“We Have Followed ‘Make-in-India’ Policy for Many Years”
With above 90 Armed Forces customers in the world, MBDA is a world leader in Missiles and Missile Systems. MBDA is the only Group capable of designing and producing Missiles and Missile Systems that ...
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INTERVIEW

RAINER FARID, VICE PRESIDENT,
SALES & CUSTOMER RELATIONS, INDIA & SOUTH ASIA, AIRBUS HELICOPTERS
 

“Airbus Helicopters is Looking to Enhance Industrial Footprint here”
Airbus Helicopters, formerly Eurocopter, is a Division of Airbus Group, a global pioneer in Aerospace and Defence related services. Airbus Helicopters is the world’s No. 1 helicopter manufacturer, wi...
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INTERVIEW

JEAN-MICHEL PALAGOS, PRESIDENT &
CEO, DEFENSE CONSEIL INTERNATIONAL (DCI)
 

“French Know-How Recognised in all Fields: Land, Sea, Air & Space”
DCI implemented a platform based on a system used by many international companies and recognised Universities. The platform enables better exchanges between the instructors and the trainees via for e...
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INTERVIEW

AVM (RETD.) ARVIND WALIA,
REGIONAL EXECUTIVE, INDIA & SOUTH ASIA,
SIKORSKY AIRCRAFT CORPORATION
 

“Sikorsky Well Positioned to Provide Solutions”
Indian Navy has selected Sikorsky’s S-70B SEAHAWK to fulfill its Multi-Role Helicopter (MRH) requirement for ASW/ASuW, among other Maritime roles. Negotiations are ongoing to procure 16 S-70B SEAHAWK...
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

SUDHIR MISHRA, CEO & MD, BRAHMOS AEROSPACE
 

“BRAHMOS Missile has Attained Continuous Successes”
BRAHMOS Aerospace Private Limited is a Joint Venture between the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India and the Federal State Unitary Enterprise NPO Mashinostroyenia (NPOM) of ...
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INTERVIEW: KHALIL RAHMAN, MD, ATLAS ELEKTRONIK INDIA

INTERVIEW: KHALIL RAHMAN, MD, ATLAS ELEKTRONIK INDIA

INTERVIEW
Atlas Elektronik and the Indian Ministry of Defence have signed a contract for the delivery of six Active Towed Array Sonar Systems (ACTAS) for the Indian Navy. The total contract volume is approxima...
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INTERVIEW: SAMIR MEHTA

INTERVIEW: SAMIR MEHTA
President, Sikorsky Defense Systems & Services
“India is an Emerging & Significant Market”

INTERVIEW
Indian Navy has selected UTC’s Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation’s S-70B SEAHAWK to fulfill its Multi-Role Helicopter (MRH) requirement for ASW/ASuW, among other Maritime roles. Negotiations will now beg...
+Read More

News



India-France Sign Landmark Contract for IAF’s Rafale MMRCA

RAFALE MMRCA CONTRACT SIGNED


India has finally signed the Rafale MMRCA contract for the IAF. A potent nuclear deterrence platform, the Rafales will come equipped with MBDA’s Meteor BVRAAM, Storm Shadow/SCALP & MICA Missiles. The induction of Rafale Fighters will enhance the IAF's strategic reach and provide superior technological edge through Air Dominance. The version of Rafale Fighters being supplied to India will have better operational capabilities than the Rafales operated by other Air Forces with better Radar, better detection and survival features and will have capabilities for operations from high-altitude airfields as well.


India-France Sign Landmark Contract for IAF’s Rafale MMRCA

India has finally signed the Rafale MMRCA contract for the IAF. A potent nuclear deterrence platform, the Rafales will come equipped with MBDA’s Meteor BVRAAM, Storm Shadow/SCALP & MICA Missiles. The induction of Rafale Fighters will enhance the IAF's strategic reach and provide superior technological edge through Air Dominance.


India Signs Euro 7.8 Billion Contract for 36 Rafale Fighters
On 23rd September 2016, India signed the contract to buy 36 Rafale Fighter jets from France to close the Euro 7.8 Billion (US$ 8.7 Billion) MMRCA deal, the country's first major acquisition of combat aircraft in nearly two decades for the Indian Air Force (IAF). In New Delhi, France's Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian signed the agreement with his Indian counterpart Manohar Parrikar, ending almost 18 months of protracted negotiations over financial terms between the Indian MoD and the French Government with Dassault Aviation, Rafale’s manufacturer and its other partners.
Soon after India and France signed the Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) for the purchase of 36 Rafale Fighters for the Indian Air Force, addressing the media, Defence Minister Manohar Parikkar hailed the agreement for fighter jets as unique in itself.


"I want to give you this information that today India has entered into an Inter-Governmental Agreement with France on Rafale. Post this, we will now have potent, effective fighter jets, which were the requirement of the Air Force. This is a first deal for fighter jets in 20 years, which is uniqueness in itself," Manohar Parikkar said. The IGA between the two Governments was signed in New Delhi in the presence of Defence Minister Parrikar and his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian.


The Rafale Omni-Role Combat Aircraft would be delivered from France in a fly-away condition along with Weapons, Training Simulator, associated equipment and Performance Based Logistics (PBL) Support. The Rafale Fighter aircrafts will be delivered to the IAF within next 36 to 67 months. This schedule is better than the delivery schedule proposed earlier by the French side.


Rafale is a Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) capable of undertaking all types of missions with a capability to simultaneously perform both Air Defence and Ground-Attack roles in a single mission. The induction of Rafale Fighters will enhance the IAF's strategic reach and provide superior technological edge through Air Dominance. The version of Rafale Fighters being supplied to India will have better operational capabilities than the Rafale aircraft being operated by other Air Forces in terms of better Radar, better detection and survival features and will have capabilities for operations from higher altitude airfields as well.


The Rafale Weapons Package includes, amongst others, MBDA’s advanced Beyond Visual Range (BVR) Meteor Air-to-Air Missiles which is much better than the previous offer. In addition, other BVR Missiles and latest Precision Guided Air-to-Ground Weapons are included as earlier, which will provide the IAF will strong capability for striking targets with precision from far off distances. The version of Rafale MMRCA being supplied will thus have higher operational capability than the earlier offer and would significantly enhance the capability edge of the IAF.


The Maintenance Support for 36 Rafale aircrafts will be provided through PBL. The PBL terms and conditions negotiated for the present procurement are better as compared to the previous French offer in terms of availability of aircraft and longer PBL duration. Unlike the previous French offer, the initial PBL support in the current procurement is of 5 years, with an option to extend by 2 more years for an amount already committed by the French side. In addition, Government of India will have the right to renew the first PBL period of 7 years for 5 more years under the same terms and conditions. India and France held several rounds of negotiations after Prime Minister Modi took the decision for direct purchase of 36 Rafale jets in fly away condition in April 2014.


The contract includes the 36 Combat Aircraft, Weapons, Spares, Support and Maintenance and the fighters will be customised as per the requirements of the Indian Air Force. The delivery of Rafale jets will be done by 2019. Under the terms of the contract, France has to ensure that 75 percent of the fleet i.e. 27 fighters are operationally available at any given time. There is a 50 percent Offset Clause under which the French Industry will invest half the contract value back in India, which is expected to develop some expertise domestically in the Aerospace Sector.


Like most defence deals, this deal too has a 50 percent optional clause, under which India can procure 18 more jets at the same price. The Indian Air Force currently has 32 Fighter Squadrons against an authorisation of 42, and many of them, particularly the MiGs, are reaching the end of their service-life and many more fighters will be required to fill the gap.


India will have to pay about R.58,000 crore or Euro 7.8 Billion for 36 off-the-shelf Dassault Aviation Rafale Twin-Engine Fighters. About 15 percent of this cost is being paid in advance. The IAF's Rafales will come equipped with the MBDA Meteor Missile designed to knock out enemy aircraft and cruise missiles with significantly enhanced ranges. The acquisition of these BVR Air-to-Air Weapons are likely to be a game changer in South Asia. Neither Pakistan nor China, India's traditional military adversaries, possess air weapons of the same class. "Rafale is a potent weapon, which will add to the capability of IAF," Defence Minister Parrikar said.


 In the accompanying 50% Offset Clause, through which France will invest 30 percent of the Euro 7.8 Billion in India's Military Aeronautics-related Research Programmes and 20 percent into Local Production of Rafale components in India through a Joint Venture with an Indian company.


The Indian Air Force should be elated as they will be getting two Squadrons of the state-of-the-art MMRCA Fighter, on the other hand, the original requirement of the IAF was for at least 126 MMRCAs, with 50% on option and this requirement still exists.


IAF Gets Rafale Combat-Edge: India & France IGA for 36 Fighters
The MMRCA deal comes with a claim of saving nearly Euro 750 Million, gained through hard negotiations by the Indian side, over the previous UPA Government negotiations, besides a 50 percent Offset Clause, which means that Indian companies and DRDO will gain work to the tune of over Euro 3 Billion.


These Rafale Omni-Role Combat Aircraft, delivery of which will start earlier than the stipulated 36 months and will be completed in 66 months from the date of contract, will come equipped with state-of-the-art MBDA Missiles like Meteor and Storm Shadow/SCALP that will give IAF new cutting-edge capabilities. The features that make the Rafale a strategic weapon in the hands of IAF will include its Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air (BVRAAM) Missile with a range of about 150 km. The Meteor integration on the Rafale Fighters will mean IAF can hit targets inside both Pakistan and across the Northern and Eastern borders, from within India's territorial boundary. Pakistan at present has only a BVR with about 80 km range and now with the Meteor Missile, the balance of power in the airspace will soon tilt entirely in India's favour. The Storm Shadow/SCALP is a Long-Range Air-to-Ground Cruise Missile with a range in excess of 500 km, will also give the IAF a winning-edge over its adversaries.


A report said the "vanilla price" of just the 36 aircraft is about Euro 3.42 Billion. The armaments cost about Euro 710 Million, while the India-specific changes, including the integration of Israeli Helmet-Mounted Displays, will cost Euro 1,700 Million. The Associate Supplies for 36 Rafales will cost about Euro 1,800 Million, while the Performance Based Logistics (PBL) costs about Euro 353 Million.


Rafale Fighters Will Enhance IAF’s Air Firepower Superiority
As the Rafale Fighters are 4.5 Generation jets and with the deal for 36 aircraft being signed now, the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) combat power will be tremendously enhanced. The Dassault Aviation Rafale Fighters will be equipped to carry out both Air-to-Ground strikes, as well as Air-to-Air attacks and Interceptions during the same sortie. Rafale is an Omni-Role Combat Aircraft, with a full-range of Advanced Weapons such as Meteor Beyond-Visual-Range (BVR) Missile, MICA Air-to-Air Missile, SCALP Long-Range Missile, Helmet-Mounted System with the Thales AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) Radar, which tracks hundreds of targets simultaneously, and latest Electronic Warfare Systems, Airborne Counter-Countermeasures, Stealth features, etc.


Dassault Aviation’s Rafale has the ability to track several targets and generate real-time three-dimensional (3-D) situational awareness maps. It has a wing span of 10.90m; length of 15.30m; and a height of 5.30m. The digital ‘Fly-by-Wire’ Flight Control System is aimed at providing longitudinal stability. The Air Combat Missiles integrated on the Rafale Fighters will add to the IAF’s firepower serving as an effective deterrent against not only Pakistan, but also China with an excellent strike range. This is why it is hoped that this deal goes beyond the 36 Fighters coming right now. The Rafale is comparable to the F-35 in some way, with huge and varying payload carrying capacity, besides being a nuclear deterrent. In that sense it is one of the deadliest aircraft in the world.


The Rafale Fighter has been in contention in India since 2006, where in fact it was a last minute replacement to the Mirage 2000-5 in IAF’s MMRCA competition. With its addition, the IAF’s depleted arsenal will get a significant performance boost. The IAF has long admired the Mirage 2000 Fighters and the Rafale is its true successor - a perfect match for the IAF. The Rafale with enhanced use of advanced carbon fibre composites helps reduce the RCS and has enhanced Stealth features as well, providing an electronics safety net. The Rafale is a modern aircraft with modern avionics. Apart from that, the Weapons Package it comes with makes it a truly potent Medium Fighter for the IAF. The AESA Radar and the BVR Missiles will make the Rafale the most formidable aircraft in the region.
India is doing well to deepen ties with France, which has proven to be a reliable Strategic Partner. Overall, the Rafale deal works in terms of capacity and capability for the IAF, and the strategic ties that India has with France and long-standing cooperation with French Manufacturers like Safran Group, Thales and MBDA.


Dassault Aviation, the French aviation major that manufactures the Rafale, had won the MMRCA tender in January 2012, but had been locked in negotiations with the Indian Government over the technical details and costs ever since. The Modi Government then tried to break the impasse and India initiated talks directly with the French Government for this Inter-Government Agreement (IGA). The conclusion of the contract, signed on 23rd September, was a great relief to the Indian Air Force as well as Dassault Aviation and its partner French companies.


India's search for a Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) had begun almost a decade ago in August 2007. Four companies participated in the first competition - Saab, MiG, Lockheed Martin and of course, Dassault Aviation. The Rafale's similarities to the Mirage 2000 that the IAF already operated, its lower life-cycle costs, and its Naval (Rafale-M Marine Variant) and Nuclear Strike Variants clinched the MMRCA deal for Dassault Aviation. Although the deal was originally envisaged to be for 126 MMRCAs with a 50% option of 63 more, this  agreement has settled for 36 jets, with 50% option of 18 more. Projected to cost about US$ 20 Billion for 126 in 2012, that figure is now down to US$ 8.7 Billion due to being only 36 Rafales.


Dassault Aviation has reportedly agreed to make India-specific modifications to the Rafales, allowing the integration of Israeli Helmet-Mounted Display Systems. Additionally, MBDA, the European Missile manufacturer, will provide the Meteor BVRAAM with about 150 km range, and the Storm Shadow/SCALP, the Air-Launched Cruise Missile with a maximum range of about 560 km, with the Rafales. Both these acquisitions will significantly improve the overall reach of the IAF, allowing them to strike deep into enemy territory. The future integration of the BrahMos-NG, a smaller version of the BrahMos-A Supersonic Missile, will make the Rafale a lethal platform for Land or Sea targets. The MBDA Exocet is also there.


A complete Transfer of Technology (ToT), including the Thales RBE2-AA Radar and software source codes, Spare parts, Maintenance, Training, and a guarantee of 75 percent operational availability for the first five years took the price up. A 50 percent Offset agreement obligates Dassault Aviation to re-invest half the money from the deal in India again, creating hundreds of new jobs and contributing to some ‘Make-in-India’ business. As earlier, 108 of the 126 were to be ‘Made in India’.


India's decision to buy only 36 aircraft, barely two Squadrons for the IAF, seems puzzling as they will not fill the gap in the IAF's numbers requirement with the Rafale's nuclear capability adding to the Indian deterrence. One can only assume that once the first batch of Fighters are delivered and inducted, a further order will be placed to augment the existing numbers, including the Naval Variants for the IAC-II Aircraft Carrier. This is even more likely if Dassault Aviation eventually begins to manufacture in India - with the Transfer of Technology (ToT), it would be easy to domestically ramp up numbers as India has previously done with the Sukhois. The Rafale's primary role is to replace the IAF's retiring fleet, while the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) is expected to step in at the low-end, the Rafale will occupy the IAF’s mid-level force structure with the expectation that an advanced indigenous descendant of the LCA Tejas MK-II like AMCA and the Fifth-Generation Fighter that India is jointly developing with Russia will form the top of the line component.


The Rafale is expected to give the IAF the dominant status in the air. The Rafale is a Multi-Role platform that can be deployed for Air Dominance, Ground Support, Aerial Reconnaissance, and Nuclear deterrence. The Rafale has been in service in Afghanistan, Libya, Mali, and Iraq and maintained a high operational rate throughout.
The Rafale, when it arrives, will substantially augment the Indian Air Force's capabilities in several mission profiles. An additional acquisition of domestically manufactured Rafales post-2021 would buy the Indian defence establishment time to complete its Advanced Multi-Role Fighter Aircraft AMCA for the IAF.


Many India-specific modifications to the Rafale MMRCAs have been agreed upon. MBDA, will provide the Meteor BVRAAM, MICA and Storm Shadow/SCALP, with the BrahMos-NG getting integrated later on to the platform to add on to the lethal capabilities. Thales RBE2-AA AESA Radar and Thales TLS 2000 Navigation Receiver, which is used for the approach phase of flight, besides smart systems of Safran Group, which will also supply the Rafale’s M-88 Aero Engine.


The French have made a 30 percent Offset commitment for Military Aerospace Research and Development programmes and the rest 20 percent for making components of Rafales in India. The Offsets will be carried out by French Partner companies Safran, Thales, and Dassault Aviation, all part of the Rafale International consortium, with MBDA and Nexter being the weapon manufacturers. In addition, India will also buy Precision-Guided Munitions at a cost of about US$ 1 Billion for immediate requirements, and it is expected to order five years’ Maintenance and Engineering Support.


The Rafale contract signing was done in the presence of both the Defence Ministers. “I am certain that the Rafale and its performance will hold high the colours of the Indian Air Force. It will demonstrate unstinting efficiency in protecting the people of India and the sovereignty of the world’s largest democracy,” Eric Trappier, Dassault Aviation Chairman and CEO who was present at the event said.


This is a direct acquisition of two Rafale Squadrons of 18 jets each in “flyaway” condition. France has agreed to fast-track the deliveries and give India better terms for the outright purchase and longer Maintenance Support for the jets. Indian Air Force pilots tested the fighters in the MMRCA competition, which it won due to the fact that it suited India’s needs and was the most adaptable to Indian climatic conditions.


Thales, a member of the Rafale Team, alongside Dassault Aviation, welcomed the selection of the Rafale Omni-Role Combat Aircraft by the Indian Air Force. On the French side, besides the French Defence Minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, the Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation, Eric Trappier and the Chairman and CEO of Thales, Patrice Caine, were present at the signing ceremony. Thales provides a number of state-of-the-art Equipment and Systems aboard the Rafale. They include the RBE2 AESA Radar, the Spectra Electronic Warfare System, Optronics Pods, the Communication Navigation and Identification System (CNI), the majority of the Cockpit Display Systems, Power Generation Systems and Logistics Support components. This contract will create hundreds of jobs on Thales manufacturing sites, in particular at Elancourt, Bordeaux, Brest and Etrelles, as well as for numerous partners and sub-contractors.


"All Thales Teams would like to thank the Indian Authorities for the trust they have placed in us. Rafale's new export success demonstrates our ability, alongside Dassault Aviation and its partners, to constantly meet the customer's highest expectations through innovation, the mastery of advanced technology and industrial excellence", said Patrice Caine, Chairman & CEO, Thales.


The 36 Rafales include 28 single-seaters and 8 twin-seaters. Earlier 24 Rafale were ordered by Egypt in February 2015, and another 24 Rafales were ordered by Qatar in May 2015. 7,000 people work on the Rafale at Dassault Aviation, Thales, Safran, as well as 500 sub-contractors. Thales has already formed several cooperative partnerships with Public and Private Sector Industries. Thales has been closely associated with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for more than 50 years and has formed Joint Ventures with Samtel, Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and L&T Technology Services.


“Rafale Will Add to IAF’s Airpower and Deep-Strike Capabilities”: Manohar Parrikar
With their state-of-the-art 150 km range Meteor BVR Air-to-Air Missiles, the Rafales will have a clear combat-edge over Pakistan's F-16 jets. India will get the first Rafale in three years, with all 36 touching down by early-2022. Till then, in the event of a conflict, India will have to deploy two Sukhoi-30MKIs to tackle each Pakistani F-16 due to the latter's superior weapons package, including 80-km range missiles. But once the Rafales are inducted, Pakistan will have to deploy two F-16s for each of IAF’s Rafales.


The Rafale will certainly be a potent Force-Multiplier for the IAF, capable of also delivering Nuclear Weapons. The Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA), signed by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian, does not put any restriction on the fighter being used as a "strategic platform". Mr. Parrikar himself was delighted about the deal. "Rafale is a very potent fighter that will add to the IAF's airpower and deep-strike capabilities," he said. Le Drian added, "The Rafale is really the best fighter jet in the world. It is an Omni-Role Aircraft capable of all kinds of missions."


French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation's CEO Eric Trappier reportedly said the Rafale was more in competition with the American F-35 Fifth-Generation Fighter because it was "a generation ahead" of the F-16. The Rafale Fighters themselves may cost around R.700 crore a piece, but the per unit cost rises to R.1,640 crore, if the overall deal is taken into account, which includes a decidedly lethal Weapons Package, all spares and costs for 75% fleet availability and Performance-based Logistics Support for five years. Further, the Rafales will be modified to several specific Indian requirements, which range from the capability for cold start at high-altitude regions like Leh, to Israeli Helmet-Mounted Displays, Advanced Missile Warning and Synthetic Aperture Radars, etc.


Rafale to Widen Radius of IAF Operations
The first of the Rafales will start coming in by September 2019 and the full fleet shall be operational by April 2022. Equipped with the latest missiles, which will widen the arch of offensive air operations, the Rafale Fighter will be a potential game-changer for India’s airborne capability on several fronts. Chiefly the Rafale will provide dependability of having the very latest technology-backed Air-Strike platform; ability to hit enemy targets which are further away due to its flight radius of some 1,000 km; be available for five sorties per day instead of three of the Su-30MKI; a new set of onboard radars to help pilots navigate and also strike; a new set of missiles that hit targets further away; and infusion of new technology in the Indian Air Force that is presently operating at its lowest level of fighters in the past decade.


The deal for 36 Rafale Fighters is inclusive of the aircraft, spares, support, training and weapons package, with the most advanced, Next-Generation Meteor Beyond-Visual-Range Air-to-Air Missile from MBDA. The Meteor is a formidable missile that can travel at over Mach-4 speed, and can take on targets that are 100 to 150km away. The Meteor Missile is a "game changer" as it outsmarts India's rivals Pakistan and China, as both these countries currently do not possess missiles of the same class. The Meteor BVR Missile is superior to any such missile in the region. The Storm Shadow/SCALP Air-to Ground Cruise Missile has two-metre precision capability. Rafale also has a faster turnaround time, capable of undertaking five sorties in a day, compared to the other fighters like Su-30s, which can do only three sorties at the most.