Keeping eye on
Indian Defence ministry sources say the new political dispensation should ensure there are no further slippages in the ongoing project to build six Scorpene submarines at Mazagon Docks, the long-delayed global tender for six new-generation submarines is issued, life extension for at least five ageing submarines is fast-tracked, and the long-term plan for nuclear submarines gets the requisite support.
The finance ministry is often blamed for being a "big obstacle" for military modernisation plans. But with
It is certainly required.
For starters, there is the long-pending "Project-75India" to acquire six stealth submarines, armed with both land-attack missile capabilities and air-independent propulsion (AIP) for greater underwater endurance. Though this over
"Since early-April, it's now again with MoF. The tender or RFP (request for proposal) can be issued only after first the MoF and then the cabinet committee on security approves it," said a source.
The urgency is required since it will take at least three years to select the foreign collaborator, and another seven to eight years after that for the first submarine to roll out. The first two submarines will be directly imported to save time, while three will be constructed at MDL in
Then, there is the ongoing
On the nuclear front,
The force currently operates only one nuclear-powered submarine, INS Chakra, acquired on a 10-year lease from
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