06 October 2010

Indian Navy To Upgrade Air Recce and Amphibious Warfare Capabilities

India continues to enhance the capabilities of its navy with the decision to purchase additional aircraft for long-range reconnaissance, as well as more amphibious warfare ships.
India Tuesday took a major step towards upgrading its Navy's maritime air reconnaissance capability and amphibious warfare strength by deciding to order four each of P8I Poseidon aircraft and Landing Pontoon Docks (LPDs) totally worth over USD 5 billion.

The four P8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft will be an add-on to the eight that India ordered from the US in January 2009 for USD 2.1 billion or nearly Rs 10,000 crore.

These four aircraft from the US aerospace major Boeing's stable would cost India about USD 1 billion (less than Rs 5,000 crore).

The four LPDs, on the lines of INS Jalashwa that India bought from the US for USD 50 million in 2007, would come at a cost of Rs 16,000 crore and a global tender would be issued for its under the Defence Ministry's 'Buy and Make' production policy. Under this, India would make the warships through license from a foreign firm.

The 17,000-tonne Jalashwa, formerly USS Trenton, is an Austin class amphibious warfare ship that can carry about 1,000 fully armed army men and has four beach landing craft and six helicopters.

The two decisions were taken at the meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) headed by Defence Minister A K Antony and attended by the three armed forces chiefs and the defence secretary this evening, ministry sources told PTI.
By: Shelldrake

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