Saturday, April 30, 2011


BANGALORE: The Indian Navy has decided to exercise its option for an additional four Boeing P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft in a bid to boost its maritime patrol capabilities as well as counter piracy threats and the growing Chinese influence in the Indian Ocean.

In a deal expected to range between $1 billion to $1.5 billion, the new aircraft will be in addition to the eight the Navy had ordered in January 2009, for about $2.1 billion. The new contract price is also expected to include the cost of aero-structures and avionics.

“The Indian Navy has received the necessary government approvals and has decided to go ahead with the contractual processes to acquire four additional P-8I aircraft under the options clause,” Commander PVS Satish, public relations officer for the Indian Navy told The Economic Times.

According to sources, Boeing has already submitted its draft offset contract to the defence ministry last week. “The government is considering exercising the option of adding four P-8I aircraft,” Dr Vivek Lall, vice-president, Boeing Defence, Space & Security told ET. The P-8I, which is based on the Boeing next-generation 737 commercial airplane, is a variant of the P-8A Poseidon that the defence vendor Boeing is developing for the US Navy. India is the first international customer for the P-8 platform.

The first of the eight P-8I aircraft, which were bought through the direct commercial sales route with Boeing, are expected to be delivered to India within 48 months of the original contract signing. The aircraft are of supreme strategic importance for India’s naval forces, with the country looking to enhance its role in the high seas.

Further, the global community has been clamouring for India to play a more dominant policing role against sea piracy in the Straits of Malacca, which is one of the busiest commercial and military sea-routes in the world, and along the East African coast.

Also, in the ongoing scramble for sea power in the world’s thirdlargest ocean, India has been desperate to stop what it perceives as a growing Chinese hegemony in the region. Separately, Boeing has also submitted a reply to the Navy’s Request for Information for six medium-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft as well.

However, ministry sources did not confirm whether any of the other global defence vendors had responded to the same.
Others expected to be in the running for the contract include Russia’s Ilyushin, France’s Dassault and EADS . Like most defence deals pursued in India, the acquisition of the MRMR aircraft has followed a long and tortuous route. With the original global Request for Procurement issued in 2008, before the Mumbai attacks, the same was later scrapped by the defence ministry on certain technical grounds.

The current RFI also specifies the aircraft should be able to carry out electronic intelligence gathering and counter-measures, besides maritime patrol and search and rescue within an operational envelope of 350 nautical miles or almost 650 kilometres, as well as a patrol endurance of at least three and a half hours.

There are additional requirements that the aircraft be capable of carrying at least two anti-ship missiles and a jamming pod. As with the P-8I, the navy has specified in the RFI that certain pieces of equipment must be indigenous, like Identification Friend or Foe Interrogator with Secure Mode, MSS Terminal, BFE, Datalink and Speech Secrecy Equipment and vendors must indicate their commitment to integrate this equipment into the aircraft.

Friday, April 29, 2011


Italian Air Force Eurofighter Typhoons Arrive for Aero India 2011

Two Eurofighter Typhoons of the Italian Air Force arrived safely in Bengaluru to showcase their outstanding operational capabilities at Aero India 2011. The air show will be held at the Air Force Station Yelahanka in Bengaluru between the 9th and 13th of February.

This is the first time that the Italian Air Force Typhoons visit India and will thrill the visitors attending the 8th edition of the Indian aerospace exhibition with breathtaking maneuvers and aerobatics of the world’s most advanced multi-role combat aircraft.
  1. Eurofighter Typhoon is one of the competitors in the Indian Air Force MMRCA tender and is regarded as the most advanced aircraft in terms of performance and technology. The Typhoon combines high combat effectiveness with low cost of ownership making it the best value for money combat aircraft worldwide.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Indian Air Force to have BrahMos by 2012

Indian Air Force expected to start using a new air-to-air variant of the supersonic BrahMos cruise missile by 2012. These were the words of A. Sivathanu Pillai, Chief Executive Officer of BrahMos Aerospace and chief controller of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
According to him the BrahMos will pack nine time more destructive capacity than any other cruise missile of its class. However much of the blast power will be caused by the high velocity which the rocket can achieve – the high velocity is transmuted into kinetic energy. The missile has the ability to fly at three times the speed of sound and can cover a kilometer in around a second. The Chief Executive Officer also said that the work on this rocket had already started in collaboration with Russia. The new rocket will be capable of achieving speeds up to Mach 7. All this information was revealed at a talk on “Science in Indian defence” at the science festival. Most of the audience consisted of students. The Chief Executive Officer of BrahMos Aerospace held a speech about the historical account of the reasons, because of which the ballistic missile programme consists of five different missiles – the Akash, Nag, Trishul, Prithvi and Agni

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Indian SU-30 Full analysis

The aircraft is fitted with a 30mm GSh-301 gun with 150 rounds of ammunition.
The aircraft has 12 hardpoints for external payloads up to 8,000kg and can carry one or two mission pods such as a laser designator or an anti-radiation missile guidance system.
The Malaysian Su-30MKM is fitted with the Thales Damocles laser designator pod.
Air-to-air missiles
The Su-30M, like the Su-30, can engage two airborne targets simultaneously. The aircraft can be armed with up to six medium-range air-to-air missiles such as the R-27RE (Nato codename AA-10C Alamo-C), the R27TE (AA-10D Alamo-D) or the Vympel RVV-AE (AA-12 Adder).

Span of Foreplane
Length Excluding Probes
Empty Weight
Maximum Fuel
Take-off Weight
Maximum Take-off Weight
Maximum External Payload
2 x Saturn AL-37FP thrust vectoring engines
Thrust With Afterburn
Maximum Level Speed
2.35 Mach, 2,150km/hr
Maximum Rate of Climb
Maximum Altitude
Combat Range
Range With Single In-flight Refuelling
Take-off Run
Landing Run

Pakistani Jf-17 thunder

Key Data:
Multirole combat aircraft
China and Pakistan
Maiden Flight
August 2003
March 2007
Numbers Built
Estimated Cost
$15m to $20m
Wing Area
Empty Weight
Maximum Take-Off Weight
Loaded Weight
Maximum Landing Weight
Fuel Weight
Klimov RD-93 turbofan engine
Number of Engines
Dry Thrust
Thrust After Burner
Maximum Speed
1,909km per hour
Ferry Range
Operational Radius
Service Ceiling
1 x 2 mm GSh-23-2 twin-barrel cannon
57mm, 90mm unguided rocket pods
Air-to-Air Missiles
Short range: AIM-9L/M, PL-5E, PL-9C Beyond visual range: PL-12 / SD-10
Air-to-Surface Missiles
MAR-1 anti-radiation missile, AM-39 Exocet anti-ship missile, and Ra'ad ALCM cruise missile
Unguided bombs: Mk-82, Mk-84 general purpose bombs, Matra Durandal anti-runway bomb, and CBU-100/Mk-20 Rockeye anti-armour cluster bomb Precision guided munitions: GBU-10, GBU-12, LT-2 laser-guided bombs, H-2, H-4 electro-optically guided, LS-6 satellite-
3 x external fuel drop tanks for extended range

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

India announced in January 2008 that it has developed a two-layered ballistic missile defence (BMD) system to counter enemy missiles. The system, comprising 'exo' and 'endo' atmospheric interceptors, destroys incoming ballistic missiles at altitudes above 40km and below 25km, respectively.
This followed a surprise announcement by the Indian Ministry of Defence in November 2006 that it had successfully destroyed a simulated incoming enemy ballistic missile while it was 78km above the Bay of Bengal, still outside the earth's atmosphere, which was greeted with scepticism.

Most analysts did not believe that India's missile defence programme was that far advanced.

However, another 'exo-atmospheric' interception was successfully completed in November 2007, and a further trial demonstrating the interception of a live ballistic missile was held in December last year. It now seems clear that India does indeed have the military capabilities to join an elite club of countries – the US, Russia and Israel – that have the technology to destroy incoming missiles.

It is now apparent that India began developing a BMD capability in 1995, after New Delhi learned that Pakistan had obtained the M9 and M11 ballistic missiles from China. The missile trials will continue for two years and commercial production will start after three years. The long-range tracking radar and the multifunction fire-control radars were developed in collaboration with Israel and France.
Following the December 2007 interception, India's top military scientist, Dr VK Saraswat of India's Defence Research and Development Organisation, said that within three years major cities such as Delhi and Mumbai would be under a protective shield.

India is also building up its offensive capabilities. It has unveiled a nuclear-capable missile (the Agni-III) with a range of 3,700 miles – far enough to hit Beijing or Rome. When deployed, the missile will boost India's second-strike capability as it can be launched from anywhere using a mobile launcher. India is also designing Agni-IV, which will carry a nuclear warhead and will have the capability to hit targets more than 5,000km away.
These developments have sparked concerns that a new arms race will get under way in the region.India's traditional foe, Pakistan, has already reacted with alarm. Following the announcement of India's plan to have a missile defence system in place by 2010, Ayesha Siddiqa, a defence analyst, said that "the first impulse is to ask how does Pakistan get [such a missile defence system]" and "the next will be to increase the number of missiles to make sure it [Pakistan] has enough to evade the shield."
China, too, is concerned. Beijing believes that the US is trying to 'encircle' China by using India and allies such as Japan and Australia as proxies, and thereby contain China's increasing military might.
"Japan has developed a two-layered ballistic missile defence (BMD) system to counter enemy missiles."China can legitimately point out that its fears are underpinned by growing military ties between the Washington and New Delhi in a number of areas, including missile defence.

India had shunned US defence equipment in general until recently, buying Soviet weapons during the Cold War, for example. However, in a watershed deal, India agreed to buy six C130J transport planes for around $1bn in January 2008 – a shift from its previous reliance on Russian transport aircraft.
The US is also involved in the race to win an $11bn deal for multi-role combat aircraft. New Delhi is expected to award the contract within the next two years.

In January 2008, India entered talks with Lockheed Martin, apparently with the aim of seeking collaboration in developing a ballistic missile defence (BMD) system. Furthermore, in February, US Defence Secretary Robert Gates confirmed that the US and India would discuss the possibility of a joint missile defence system.

India had previously said it would develop its missile shield domestically, closing off a potentially lucrative market to American manufacturers Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman – the biggest players in the emerging ground, air, sea and space-based US missile defence system.
Dennis D Cavin, vice president of international air and missile defence strategic initiatives (IAMDSI) at Lockheed Martin, said that India could be looking for US help in developing 'hit-to-kill' technology for its interceptor missiles. But In his press briefings, Dr Saraswat said that India had used 'proximity fragmentation' in missile interception already.
The US, by contrast, uses a direct 'hit-to-kill' method to destroy incoming missiles. Lockheed has developed the PAC 'hit-to-kill' anti-missile system for the US. PAC missile systems have been delivered and deployed around the world with US forces and US allies.

Lockheed is also the prime contractor for the terminal high-altitude area defense (THAAD) anti-missile system.The THAAD missile system is an easily transportable defensive weapon system, whose function is to protect against hostile incoming threats such as tactical and theatre ballistic missiles at ranges of 200km and at altitudes of up to 150km. PAC-II, III and THAAD will form essential components of the multi-layered missile defence system that the US is developing.

While the PAC-II and III systems are being deployed to tackle the threat from air-breathing cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), the THAAD system is developed to take care of threats from 'exo' and 'endo' atmospheric ballistic missiles. The Americans are likely to deploy the THAAD system between 2009 and 2010 to give cover to US troops operating overseas. Washington has offered to sell PAC-II and III BMD systems to India, but it hasn't commented on whether THAAD could also be made available to the nation.

"India has unveiled a nuclear-capable missile (the Agni-III) with a range of 3,700 miles."A POLITICAL DEFENCE

However, political obstacles will have to be overcome if any such collaborative venture is to proceed smoothly. Indian defence deals are characterised by delays, political interference, a lack of transparency and allegations of corruption. Most importantly, there is still a substantial body of political opinion in India that is opposed to what is seen as the US's global 'hegemony'.

A civil nuclear agreement, seen by many as the centrepiece of India's strategic relationship with Washington, has hit obstacles in New Delhi, where it is opposed by the Indian government's communist allies. The agreement would allow New Delhi to access US nuclear fuel and reactors by overturning a three-decade ban imposed after India conducted a nuclear test while staying out of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.

Either way, given that the US leads the world in BMD technology, the lack of alternative suppliers and the growing threat posed by Pakistan and China as they pursue ambitious missile programmes, it seems likely that India will indeed seek to develop a BMD shield in collaboration with the US.

Monday, April 25, 2011

KABUL: Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna vowed Sunday that security threats would not drive his country out of Afghanistan during a two-day visit to Kabul.
Speaking after talks with Afghan counterpart Zalmai Rassoul, Krishna said that threats to Indians working in Afghanistan were “real” but added his country was “not going to be cut down” by them.
Nine Indians died in a Taliban suicide attack on foreigners in the Afghan capital in February last year, while a suicide bomber killed 41 people in an attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul in 2008.
“The threat to our mission unfortunately is real,” Krishna told a press conference, while adding he was “confident” that the Afghan government could provide the necessary protection.
“Let me hasten to add India is not going to be cut down by such threats,”he said. “We will continue to remain in Afghanistan as long as the legitimately elected government of Afghanistan wants us to be here.”
The two sides also discussed “the need to deal firmly with safe havens for terrorist groups that continue to exist outside Afghanistan’s borders,” Krishna said.
Both India and Afghanistan have pointed the finger at Pakistan over security threats, suggesting elements within its power structures fund and support extremism within its borders.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Vikrant Class are the first indigenously designed and built aircraft carriers in India. Two aircraft carriers are being constructed for the Indian navy by Cochin Shipyard (CSL). The first ship in the series will replace the retired aircraft carrier, INS Virat.

The first steel was cut for the lead ship, INS Vikrant, in April 2005. Its keel was laid down in February 2009, and it is scheduled to be launched in mid-2011 and commissioned in 2014. The second indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC-2) is expected to be ordered by 2010 for induction into the Indian Navy in 2017.

Vikrant Class design and features

Designed by the Directorate of Naval Design, the aircraft carrier can operate a combination of Russian MiG-29K, Ka31 and the indigenous light combat aircraft. It will be powered by two LM2500 gas turbines. The design incorporates highly automated systems for machinery operation, ship navigation and survivability.

The ship will have an overall length of 260m and a breadth of 60m and its displacement will be 40,000t. The ship can accommodate 1,600 personnel including ship company, airgroup and troops.


The design and construction of the first aircraft was approved by the Indian Government in January 2003. The construction work began in November 2006. Built through modular construction, a total of 874 blocks were fabricated for the erection.

"The Vikrant Class are the first indigenously designed and built aircraft carriers in India."
The ship is constructed from high-strength steel manufactured in-house with the assistance of the Defence Research and Development Organisation and the Steel Authority of India. These aircraft carriers will be the biggest warships ever built by CSL.

Fincantieri of Italy will provide assistance for propulsion system integration and the Naval Design Bureau of Russia will supply its aviation technology.

The Ministry of Defence granted funds to the shipyard to improve infrastructure such as workshops and heavy-duty machinery. The ship will be completed in two phases.

The first phase includes the work up to first launch at the end 2010, while the second will cover the remaining works until the delivery of the ship.


The flight deck will feature two take-off runways and a landing strip equipped with three arrester wires. The STOBAR (short take-off but arrested recovery) system on an angled flight deck is used to launch and recover an aircraft from the deck of an aircraft carrier. IAC-2 will be fitted with steam catapults rather than STOBAR to launch fourth-generation aircraft. The aircraft carrier can accommodate up to 30 aircraft. It will have adequate hangar and maintenance facilities for aircraft onboard.

The airgroup will be a mix of combat aircraft including the MiG-29K, Sea Harrier and naval light aircraft as well as the HAL Dhruv and Ka-31 helicopters. The Ka-31 provides airborne early warning coverage.

Weapon systems

The aircraft carrier will be fitted with a vertical launch system for long-range surface-to-air missiles. A close-in weapon system will provide self-defence for the ship against incoming anti-ship missiles and aircraft. Four OTO Melera 76mm Super Rapid guns - two on the bow section and two at the stern side – will be fitted. They can fire 120 rounds a minute at a range of 30,000m.


The Vikrant Class ships will be equipped with a modern early air warning radar, VHF or UHF tactical air navigation and direction finding systems. The ship will also feature jamming capabilities. The combat management system onboard will use sensors and tactical data links to provide real-time situational awareness.


A combined gas turbine and gas turbine propulsion system will power the ship. Four General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines driving two shafts will provide a total power of 80MW. The propulsion system provides a maximum speed of over 28kt. The ship will have a range of about 8,000nm.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Exercise Varuna 2011, starting tomorrow in the Arabian Sea off Goa, is a major part of the French Navy's Agapanthe 2010 deployment. This bilateral exercise will involve nine ships, including two aircraft carriers: INS Viraat (with Sea Harriers and Seaking) and FS Charles De Gaulle (strike group composed of E2C, Rafale and SEM).

The 7 other units are the following: Indian frigates INS Godavari and INS Ganga, Class-209 submarine INS Shalki, French destroyers FS Forbin and FS Tourville, fleet tanker FS Meuse and nuclear submarine FS Am├ęthyste. Shorebased maritime patrol aircraft will also participate in the exercise.

Exercise Varuna will start with a harbour phase in Mormugao (7-10 January), followed by a phase at sea (11-14 January). The phase off Goa includes air operations, submarine exercises, surface exercises as well as replenishment at sea.

Friday, April 22, 2011


The Eurofighter consortium is for India to offer delightful opportunityto acquire a new version of its Typhoon fighter for use in futureaircraft carrier that is being manufactured in India, with the firstdetails on the proposal appearing established during the AeroIndia.
One of the six aircraft that compete in MMRCA the Indian Air Force, the Eurofighter is present in the event that started today in India thinking of picking up a potential naval development that hasgone through detailed studies in the UK.
"If the Typhoon fighter to win the MMRCA then India will have the ability to develop their country in a naval version of the game," said Paul Hopkins, vice president of business development for BAESystems India. "This is a perfect opportunity for the nation to addcapabilities to the aircraft operating on the ground and loaded."

As shown in the form of a model for the first time this week, the European model may receive many new features to support its operation at sea. Among these included a new reinforced landing gear, an arrestor hook and modified control system of thrust vectoring in two Eurojet EJ200 engines. The latter could allow the game to make an approach to the carrier a reduced speed without impeding the pilot's vision by the requirement of an increased angle of attack.
The Eurofighter said only localized reinforcements will be needed in some parts of the fuselage near the landing gear, and engine EJ200. Conformal fuel tanks in the fuselage would extend the range of attack aircraft.

Also of interest for application in India are the new weapon options shown for the first time in a scale model of 100% of the Typhoon. Working in conjunction with Saab and Diehl, the group is offering the Eurofighter anti-ship missile RBS15 as one of the options for the future multimission fighter.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Aero india 2011 Indian Army Get Fist batch of Advance Light Helicopters

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will hand over a Cheetah helicopter to the Namibian Air Force and five Shakti engine-powered Advance Light Helicopters (ALHs) — Dhruv (Mk III) — to the Indian Army during the upcoming Aero India 2011.

The five ALHs are the first batch of helicopters to be handed over to the Army as part of the 159 ALH programme. Chairman of the Bangalore-headquartered defence manufacturing major, Ashok Nayak, will hand over the helicopters on February 9.

HAL will also showcase its wide range of capabilities, which include the mock up of Light Utility Helicopter (LUH), a Fixed Base Full Mission Simulator (FBMS) of Intermediate Jet Trainer and a model of the Multi-role Transport Aircraft (MTA).

“At this Aero India, we will showcase our future products and technologies, our designing capabilities and the excellence we have achieved in manufacturing. We would also use this platform to explore more business opportunities with other countries,” said Nayak in a statement.

According to HAL, a red and white painted, the mock up of LUH displaying the state-of-the art design features of chopper will be showcased.

Besides, a model of MTA will also be on display. Manufactured by HAL and UAC of Russia, the aircraft will replace the AN-32 of the Indian Air Force.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


 Russia has offered to equip the Indian Su-30MKI aircraft with the electronically scanned array radar to bring them on par with the most modern fighter aircraft in the world. Currently the technical configuration of the upgraded aircraft with onboard AESA radar is being discussed by Russian and Indian experts.
The upgraded aircraft could be equipped with perspective Russian or foreign-made weapon, including Indo-Russian “BrahMos” anti-ship missiles, an Irkut statement said at Aero India 2011 A multirole Su-30MKI aircraft which became a sort of symbol of the IRKUT Corporation deserves an honourable place in the exposition of the company (stand 24, hall A). Fighter developed by JSC “Sukhoi Design Bureau” on demand of the Indian Air Force are mass-manufactured at the Irkutsk Aviation Plant. The IRKUT Corporation delivers to India ready-made Su-30MKI fighters as well as Su-30MKI technical kits for license production by India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd Corporation.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Plans for modernising Indian Air Force’s (IAF) Soviet-era helicopter fleet are gathering momentum with acquisition plans of attack, heavy-lift and medium-lift helicopters reaching final stage. The IAF is gearing up to induct new rotary wing machines to match the emerging strategic scenario and for ferrying troops, men and material even during natural calamity.

The decision on acquisition of nearly 350 helicopters of different genre will be reached in a month’s time, according to Air Chief Marshal PV Naik. The procurement process is on for acquiring 22 attack helicopters to replace fleet of ageing Mi-35 attack choppers. The contract value is pegged at $600 million approximately.

“The contest for the attack helicopters is between Russian Mi-28 and American Apache AHG-64D. The flight trials have been completed and the report is expected in a week or so,” said Naik.

The IAF has contracted the Russian Rosoboronexport to supply 80 Mi-17 V5 medium-lift helicopter valued at $1.3 billion. The rotary wing aircraft will be supplied in 2011 only. The force is going for add on order of 40 choppers, the IAF chief said.

The Mi-17 V5new acquisitions will replace the existing fleet of around 150 Mi-8 helicopters of Russian vintage.

In the heavy-lift segment the trials have been conducted between the US’ Chinook CH-47 and Russian Mi-26 helicopters for a deal potentially worth $2 billion. The IAF intends to buy 15 of these units.

“The flight evaluation bit is over and final report is expected in a month or so,” revealed Naik.

Alongwith this, IAF in conjunction with the Indian Army would be getting 197 light utility helicopters to replace its 300-odd ‘Cheetah’ and ‘Cheetal’ choppers.

“For light utility helicopters army is the main buyer. Flight trials are over in this and the report would be reaching to us in a week.”

Moreover, the successful flight of the indigenously built Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) in 2010 has given another option to the IAF which will be inducted the machine in its force only by 2014-2015.
Apart from this, the IAF is actively pursuing a comprehensive plan to upgrade its Soviet era helicopter fleet by upgrading older machines. A parallel plan is underway to renew assets in the next 10 years as part of the air force's overall perspective plan. Plans are afoot to upgrade over 50 choppers in the fleet of Mi-8 and Mi-17 helicopters. The upgrades are expected to increase the life of the rotary wing aircraft by a decade.

Monday, April 18, 2011


In an endeavor to boost defence cooperation between the two nations,General Yoshifumi Hibako, Chief of Staff, Japanese Ground Self Defence Forces, is currently on a four-day visit of India.

India and Japan share a global vision of peace and stability. A road map for developing cooperation in the defence and security was agreed to in the form of joint statement during the then defence minister Pranab Mukherjee's visit to Japan in 2006.

A 'Defence Policy Dialogue' has been established between the two countries and military to military Talks have also been institutionalized. Both the nations are committed to build on their strategic convergences and strengthen defence cooperation in mutually identified fields.

During his four days visit ending on February 16, General Hibako is scheduled to interact with senior officials of Indian armed forces and Ministry of Defence and discuss issues to enhance military cooperation.

This visit will further cement the historic ties between India and Japan, especially the military to military contacts, which are based on mutual trust and understanding.

Japanese Army Chief in India to boost defence ties

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Indian Navy to issue Rs 50,000 crore (US$ 11 billion) submarine tender this year

NEW DELHI: The Navy will issue a global tender for procuring six next generation submarines worth over Rs 50,000 crore by the end of this year.

"The government has cleared Project-75 India which is the next lot of six submarines... At the moment we are going with the Request for Information (RFI) process, I hope within this year we would be able to push off the tender," Navy chief Admiral Nirmal Verma told reporters on the sidelines of a submarine seminar.

Project-75 India is a follow on of the Scorpene submarine project, six of which are being built by the Mazgaon Dockyards Limited (MDL) under a Rs 20,000 crore deal with French company DCNS.

With a depleted submarine strength, the Navy is planning to induct over 12 submarines in the next 10-12 years. The plans have also suffered a setback in view of the delays in the construction of the Scorpenes in Mumbai.

Talking about the capabilities of future submarines, the Navy chief said, "It will be a different boat in the sense that we are revising its Qualitative Requirements. Along with better sensors it will also have better hiding capability, improved detection range and combat management system."

He said the Navy would go for the Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) systems for the submarines, which would enhance their capability of remaining submerged in water for a longer time period.

On the weapon systems to be put on the next line of under water vessels, Verma said Navy was planning to use a mix of indigenous torpedoes along with the missiles which are being deployed on the Scorpene submarines.

To a question on safety of Indian fishermen being targeted by the Sri Lankan Navy, he said, "The issue was highlighted during the visit of the Sri Lankan President also. The joint working group on fisheries is supposed to address these issues and that is the way to resolve it."

He denied knowledge of any apprehensions expressed by China on India's forthcoming exercises with the navies of the US and Japan. "You have to bear in mind that it is not the first time these exercises are happening. I am not aware of any such apprehension," he said.

On the annual exercise TROPEX, the Admiral said that besides elements from army and air force, the navy would also include its amphibious elements for the first time in the exercise.

"TROPEX in terms of involved expenses and platforms is the largest exercise we have. This time we have huge amphibious elements including the participation from army and the air force," he said.

Indian Navy inducted its first amphibious warship INS Jalashwa from US in 2007.

Saturday, April 16, 2011


 India is cranking up the pressure on China to come out in unequivocal support of its bid for a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council.

The move comes about even as a friendly American lawmaker moved a Bill in the United States Congress to ask President Barack Obama to actively work towards helping New Delhi's ambition come to fruition.

"We believe that India is a deserving candidate for permanent membership of the Security Council," Indian foreign secretary Nirupama Rao told Chinese state television recently. "We would like to see greater understanding from China for India's case."

Last month, India began a two-year term on the Security Council as Asia's representative for the rotating seat, with the support of 187 of the 192 members of the world body. The broad support in some ways wiped out the humiliation of 1996, when India contested against Japan for the post, and lost badly.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and foreign minister S.M. Krishna are working for the current Security Council perch to be converted into a permanent one by the time India has to surrender the seat.

Towards that end, India is not only pushing its own case but also coordinating closely with Japan, Germany and Brazil for an expanded council.

Earlier this month, the G-4, as they are known, called for "earliest expansion" of the Security Council in both its permanent and non-permanent categories.

Also, US congressman Alcee Hastings introduced a bipartisan resolution in the House of Representatives voicing support for the Indian bid.

Thus far, China is the only permanent member of the Security Council that has not come out in clear terms to endorse India's aspirations. New Delhi has raised the issue at every high-powered meeting between the two nations.

China, responding to the G-4 statement, said that "forcing premature plans... (would) undermine the unity of UN member states" since there were sharp differences over major issues.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu has said Beijing stood for "extensive and democratic consultations" before moving on the issue, indicating that it is in no hurry.

Analysts said Chinese reluctance to voice firm support for the Indian bid stems from two reasons.

One is an obvious reluctance to share power and the spotlight with another Asian force. But beyond that, Beijing is also distrustful of the developing US-India alliance.

Last November, in a speech to the Indian Parliament, Obama endorsed India's aspirations to be included as a permanent member.

The US not only welcomes India as a rising global power, it fervently supports it, he said.

But, he said, with increased power came responsibilities, one of which was to advance human rights and preserve peace and security. India, he said, had sometimes shied away from these issues. The price of freedom is standing up for the freedom of others, Obama said.

Analysts noted that New Delhi has been quietly realigning some of its public postures to hew closer to the US line.

This week, for instance, it used unusually blunt language as it took on Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's handling of the political crisis in his country.

"India deplores the use of force which is totally unacceptable and must not be resorted to," the Indian foreign ministry said late on Tuesday night. "It is earnestly hoped calm is restored at the earliest without any further violence."

That follows a comment from Dr Singh to television editors last week that "India welcomes the dawn of democracy anywhere in the world" although, he added, it will not seek to impose its views on others.
Rao said she is hopeful that when the moment arrives, China will not stand in India's way.

"I doubt very much if China would oppose that when it comes to that," she said in a speech in New York last week. "But, as of now, China is not expressing itself openly in favour of India's candidature."

Friday, April 15, 2011


Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi has stressed the significance of expanding bilateral relations between the Islamic Republic and India.

"Officials and politicians of the two countries should increase and expand ties and meetings," Salehi said in a meeting with India's National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon in Tehran on Tuesday.

He also pointed out that Iran and India have historical and cultural commonalities, adding that New Delhi plays an important role in the region and the world, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The Iranian foreign minister said Tehran and New Delhi can raise cooperation in economic, trade, technology, and other sectors given Iran's rich energy resources and India's technological achievements.

The Indian national security advisor, for his part, said that the two nations should strengthen their relations in new fields.

Menon also met Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday.

The Islamic Republic is India's second-largest oil supplier after Saudi Arabia, with New Delhi importing 12 million barrels of Iranian crude on a monthly basis.

Trade volume between Iran and India reached almost $13 billion in 2007 after business between the two countries jumped by 80 percent.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


The phase one production of Arjun Mark-II will be completed by July 2011 and phase two production with 93 new improvements will be completed by June 2012, said P Sivakumar, Director of Combat Vehicle Research and Development Establishment, a wing of the DRDO.

In Phase-I, 45 tanks will roll out with 56 upgrades, including the missile firing capability and the enhanced night vision, and in Phase-II, the remaining 79 tanks, with all the 93 improvements, will come off the assembly line. “By 2013-14, the first batch of 30 tanks will reach the ground,” Sivakumar told Express.

Addressing a seminar at Anna University, Sivakumar also mentioned the need for defence establishments to reduce the weight of combat vehicles like tanks. “Material sciences and nanotechnology play a significant role in this change. At present Arjun tanks weigh 60 tonnes. But there may be a demand to reduce the weight to 50 tonnes to improve mobility. This can be achieved to some extent by applying nanotechnology in reducing the thickness of armors while retaining their strength,” he said.

The DRDO research and innovation center at IIT-Madras Research Park will try to work and address such needs by collaborating with educational institutions, Sivakumar said.

“The center will become operational by July and we look to pool in resources from students of IIT-M and Anna University to conduct futuristic research at this centre, different from projects going on in the regular DRDO labs,” he said.

The focus of this research centre, according to Sivakumar, will be on developing the suspension technology. “India is a leader in hydropneumatic suspension technology and we are looking to broaden the scope further through this centre,” he said.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


The Russian built Indian Aircraft Carrier INS Vikramaditya has begun mooring trials on March 1 in Russia. The order to start testing was signed by Sevmash Director General Nikolai Sevmash Kalistratov. Sevmash, the agency which is involved in transformation of the carrier says that this is a serious step in the modernization of the ship, particularly marked in the master schedule building.

Outfitting work entered its final stage. The ship has been gradually populated with the equipment, machinery, pipes, cables, and now all this must be checked in different modes. Tests will be conducted on special programs and techniques.
As per sevmash, the most difficult and important test will be the main power plant. The second major task will be to check electronic armament complexes, including complexes of Indian origin and aviation facilities ships. Mooring tests will be important for testing training systems and equipment. The factory sea trials has been planned to begin in late 2011.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


India will this month begin the price negotiation for the $10.4-billion contract for 126 combat planes for its air force to conclude the deal by July this year, Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik said here Thursday.

"The cost negotiation for MMRCA will begin by the end of this month. I expect the contract to be signed before I retire from service in July this year," Naik, who interacted with the capital's women journalists, said.

India is buying 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) for which it issued tender in August 2007. The six contenders for the contract, described in defence circles as 'mother of all deals', are American majors Boeing and Lockheed Martin , Russian United Aircraft Corporation , French Dassault, European consortium EADS-Cassidian and Swedish Saab.

Boeing's F/A-18, Lockheed Martin's F-16, United Aircraft Corporation's MiG-35, Dassault's Rafale, EADS-Cassidian's Eurofighter Typhoon and Saab's Gripen are the fighter aircraft in the fray.

The chosen combat jet will be the mainstay of IAF's fighter aircraft fleet for the next 40 years. The new MMRCA will replace the IAF's existing fleet of MiG variants.

Monday, April 11, 2011

indian missile dhanush tested successfully

India successfully test-fired Prithvi II, Dhanush
Indigenously developed, nuclear-capable ballistic missile Prithvi-II was today test- fired from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur, about 15 km from here off Orissa coast, in less than an hour of flight testing of "Dhanush" from a naval ship.
"Prithvi-II missile, which has a maximum range of 350 kms, was test fired from a mobile launcher at the launch complex-3 in the ITR" at around 1100 hours, defence sources said.
Official sources said trials of both "Dhanush", test-fired from a warship at a spot between Paradip and Puri, and Prithvi-II missiles were successful.
"Prithvi-II missile has proved its robustness and accuracy repeatedly during many trials earlier," a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) official said.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Syed Jamaluddin has been constantly saying since 2001 that Pakistan´s secret agency called INTER-SERVICES INTELLIGENCE (ISI) is 100% involved in providing all types of support to Taliban in Afghanistan. In his book titled "DIVIDE PAKISTAN TO ELIMINATE TERRORISM", Syed Jamaluddin has categorically mentioned that ISI has been assisting TALIBAN in many ways. Taliban camps based in Afghanistan as well as bordering region along side Pakistan get consistent financial, logistical and military assistance from ISI and Pakistan Army. Time has come for the international community to realize this fact now before its too late. The international community should immediately disintegrate Pakistan in order to dismantle the terrorist network operating in Afghanistan with the assistance of Pakistan Army and ISI. Pakistan´s disintegration will crush the power of terrorists because formation of independent countries like BALOCHISTAN and PAKHTOONISTAN will become a great hurdle in the way of ISI to continue its support for the Taliban.

Saturday, April 9, 2011


 The British government has said there is a "clear link" between Pakistan's intelligence agency, ISI and three major militant outfits Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammed and Harakat Mujahideen operating in Jammu and Kashmir, and proscribed by Britain.

"Terrorism (from across the border) has had the covert support of the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI)," the main intelligence agency in Pakistan, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, who recently visited India and Pakistan to defuse their tension, told the House of Commons.

 "Her majesty's government accepts that there is a clear link between ISI and these groups—Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammed and Harakat Mujahideen—which have been proscribed in Britain", he said.

After the government had made a similar statement in the House of Lords, one member said Britain should impress upon India that it should implement the UN resolutions on Kashmir.

India born lord Swraj Paul intervened to say that the best course was to take a realistic view of the situation now. Both India and Pakistan should be persuaded that the war was not an answer to their problems and that they should sit together and find a solution through dialogue.

Lord Paul praised the hard work and the efforts of Straw and the British High Commissioner in New Delhi Sir Rob Young to defuse the Indo-Pak situation.


On the other hand, even if the US does not accede to its extreme demands like taking an indulgent view of its cross-border terrorism against India, supporting Washington DC will help to protect, if not further, what Pakistan perceives to be its two principal national goals. The first relates to keeping alive the Taliban, which it had founded with the help of the United States' Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in May, 1994. The second relates to ensuring the survival of fundamentalist terrorist outfits like the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), Harkat-ul Mujaheedin (HuM), Hizb-ul Mujaheedin (HM), Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and the Al-Badr Mujaheedin (AM), it has established, financed, provided and armed to conduct cross-border terrorism against India.

Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) established the Taliban with the help of the CIA to gain control over Afghanistan. One of its principal aims in this, as well as its earlier participation in the war in Afghanistan against Soviet occupation, was to gain strategic depth vis-a-vis India by having a client regime in Kabul and, subsequently, further its expansionist designs in Central Asia. The US also wanted a regime in Afghanistan which would ensure undisturbed flow of crude oil from Central Asia to Pakistani ports like Karachi and eventually, to refineries of its oil giants.

Pakistan needs to keep the Taliban alive to retain the control it has established over almost the whole of Afghanistan through it. It also needs to keep alive the terrorist militias for conducting its proxy war against India through cross-border terrorism, and for fomenting secessionist movements in different parts of this country. Its lending of full support to the US in any attack on Afghanistan will not in conflict with the twin objectives. It is not difficult to understand why. Very few men of Osama bin Laden's terrorist outfit, Al Qaida would be in Afghanistan by the time the US military attack begins. Given the experience of US air strikes against them in August, 1998, following their bomb attacks on US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania earlier that month, the bulk of them must have started moving out of their camps and bases even before the terrorist strikes on September 11.

While some of them perhaps remain in Afghanistan to fight US troops if they move in, the natural destination for others is Pakistan where they can lie low until the storm passes. The ISI has been working in close cooperation with bin Laden. Besides, organisations like the LeT, HuM, HM, JeM, AM and so on, have themselves established contacts with both the Taliban and Al-Qaida. Significantly, Pakistan kept its border with Afghanistan open though the US requested Islamabad to close it in the immediate aftermath of last Tuesday's terrorist outrages.

By cooperating with the US, Pakistan would not, therefore, be helping to liquidate bin Laden and his men. Rather, it seems to hope that such cooperation would spare its own terrorist training and staging camps from American retribution. If that happens, it will emerge from the conflict, that appears to be round the corner, with at least a section of the Taliban and its own terrorist training and staging camps and their inmates safe and ready for further action. It is, however, not taking chances. Camps run in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) bordering Afghanistan, by organisations like the HuM, HM, JeM, Harkat-ul Jihadi Islami, Tehreek-e-Jihadi Islami and the Muslim Mujaheedin, for training terrorists for infiltrating into India and committing terrorist acts, are being closed down. The trainee terrorists are reportedly moving into safer areas. Thus even if these are bombed, the trainees would live to fight another day; the same applies to people who are with the Taliban and Al Qaida.

If the US seriously wants to squelch terrorism, it should ask Islamabad to not only hand over personnel of the Taliban and Al Qaida who have moved into Pakistan but act firmly against those of the LeT, HuM, HM, JeM, AM and so on. Failure to do so will not only be inconsistent with its resolve to wipe out terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, but invite trouble for itself in the future. Pakistan's fundamentalist terrorist outfits, causing death and destruction in India, also hate the US, which they regard as the principal supporter of Zionism and the source of all moral pollution in the world. Yossef Bodansky, Director, US Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare, quotes, in his highly informative book, Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America, Prof Hafeez Mohammad Saeed, leader of the Markaz-al-Dawa al-Irshad (whose striking arm is the LeT) as saying that the White House was "the source of all mischief in the world" and the day "was not far off when the mujaheedin will blow it up through their jihad".

The Pakistani Army will revive the fundamentalist Islamic terrorist organisations in future if they now escape by and large untouched. It has been thoroughly infiltrated by hard-line Islamic fundamentalists who are also bitterly anti-American. In 1990, its chief, General Aslam Beg was ousted when he was about to stage a coup "in defiance of American hegemony". Khaled Ahmed, who writes this in his chapter 'Fundamental Flaws' in On the Abyss: Pakistan after the Coup (HarperCollins publishers India), says that his successor, Gen Asif Nawaz, a secular person and a professional soldier, began taking action against fundamentalist Islamist elements in the Pakistani Army. He removed not only Lt-Gen Hamid Gul as head of the ISI but also Maj-Gen Zaheerul Islam Abbasi, who retaliated by trying to stage a 'revolution' in the Pakistani Army's headquarters "because he was made to salute American officers" while on duty in Gilgit. In December 1996, Gen Nawaz, who was under tremendous pressure from fundamentalist Islamic officers appointed to the Intelligence Bureau by Mr Nawaz Sharif, then Prime Minister, died following a heart attack. He was widely suspected to have been murdered.

Gen Jehangir Keramat, another professional and secular soldier succeeded him. Fundamentalist elements, however, continued to be a formidable presence in the Pakistan Army. According to Khaled Ahmed, Gen Keramat's weakness became clear when the Army's journal, Hilal, published an editorial against him for "secularising the Army", and he was unable to dismiss or sideline the senior officer who had it written.

The ISI too is intensely anti-US. It made sure that the fight against Soviet occupation of Afghanistan was dominated by fundamentalist Muslims. Bodansky writes, "The ISI adamantly opposed supporting Afghan resistance organisations associated with the pre-dominantly tribal traditional Pushtun population, who are essentially pro-Western. Instead, the ISI insisted on diverting more than 70 per cent of the foreign aid to the Islamic parties-particularly Hizb-i-Islami-who were inherently and virulently anti-American.

Friday, April 8, 2011


India's external counter-terrorism policies
India has been the victim of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism since the 1950s. In those years, Pakistan's ISI had supported the insurgent/terrorist groups in India's northeast region and provided them sanctuaries, training, arms and ammunition in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of the then East Pakistan. India's anxiety to stop this played an important role in its assistance to the people of East Pakistan to liberate themselves.

Since 1980, the ISI has been providing sanctuaries, training, arms and ammunition in Pakistan to religious terrorist groups operating in Punjab, J&K and other parts of India. It is also infiltrating the mercenaries of the Pakistani pan-Islamic jihadi organisations into India to promote cross-border terrorism.

India has taken up this issue with the US since 1992 and wants Pakistan declared a State sponsor of international terrorism under US laws and have punitive action taken against it. In 1993, the Clinton administration placed Pakistan on a watch list of suspected State sponsors of international terrorism for six months and forced Nawaz Sharif , who was then in power, to sack Lieutenant General Javed Nasir, then ISI's director-general, and other senior officers. This did not have any effect on the use of terrorism by the ISI.

Since 9/11, Pakistan's military-intelligence establishment has been collaborating with the US in taking action against Al Qaeda elements posing a threat to US nationals and interests. But it has not taken any action against cross-border terrorism directed against India and to destroy terrorist infrastructure in PoK and the Northern Areas.

After the attack by terrorists belonging to LET and JEM on the Indian Parliament in December 2001, India mobilised and deployed its Army on the border in response to public pressure for action against the terrorist infrastructure in Pakistani territory. In response to appeals from the US, UK and other friendly governments, India refrained from action against Pakistan. Under US pressure, Pakistan banned LET and JEM, but not HUJI and HUM, and arrested some of their leaders and cadres. They have since been released.

US officials themselves admit Pakistan has not implemented its assurances to the US that it would put a stop to cross-border terrorism in J&K. Despite this, the US is reluctant to act against Pakistan because of its cooperation in assisting the US in neutralising Al Qaeda elements who have taken shelter in Pakistan.

India has made it clear that there will be no question of any talks with Pakistan on the normalisation of bilateral relations till it stops cross-border terrorism, winds up the terrorist infrastructure in its territory and gives up the use of terrorism as a weapon against India.

India has also been greatly concerned over the use of Bangladesh territory by religious and non-religious terrorists operating against India. The non-religious terrorist groups continue to enjoy sanctuaries in the CHT. Of the religious terrorist organisations, HUJI has an active branch in Bangladesh. Some Al Qaeda elements, who escaped into Pakistan from Afghanistan, have found their way into Bangladesh, where they have been given shelter by HUJI.

There is active complicity between the ISI and its counterpart in Dhaka in this matter. The Bangladesh authorities have not been co-operating with India in taking effective action against the large-scale illegal immigration into India. However, keeping in view the otherwise good relations with Bangladesh, India has been trying to have these problems sorted out bilaterally at the political and diplomatic levels. But the progress so far has been disappointing.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


 DRDO may also be developing a 300-km submarine-launched ballistic missile, Sagarika, based on the Prithvi. The program is reported to have started in 1992 and was originally reported to involve adapting a ramjet engine to the missile to reduce the need for heavy oxidizers. India does not have a submarine configured for launching ballistic missiles. (1)

According to other reports, India is developing the Dhanush (Bow, as in "bow and arrow" not the bow of the ship) submarine launched ballistic missile. With a range variously estimated at between 300 km and 350 km, this missile which would be later deployed on surface warships. It is unclear whether this missile would be deployed on India's new nuclear missile submarine.

Danush is a medium range indigenously developed ship-launched missile exclusively developed for the Navy. The Dhanush project is sometimes considered the Naval version of the Prithvi, though this may represent a program analog rather than any technological relationship.

There are two versions of the 8.56 meter long Dhanush missile under development. One such version, having a range of 250 km. This short-range missile will be used as an anti-ship weapon. The Indian Navy is apparently seeking another variant of the Dhanush surface-to-surface ballistic missile that is capable of striking land targets within a range of 500 km. The longer-range missile will have propulsion fuel similar to its short-range version.

Testing of this missile was originally planned to begin in December 1998. The first flight test of the Dhanush was conducted on 11 April 2000 from INS Subhadra, close to the Orissa coast in the Bay of Bengal. The missile flew for only four seconds and broke into two pieces, barely managing to clear the ship. The launch was dubbed a "technology demonstrator" and several more missile tests may be required to make this weapon battle-worthy.

With the development of Dhanush still at an early stage, the debate on cruise versus ballistic missiles has revived within the Navy.

The precise relationship between the Dhanush and the Sagarika programs remains obscure. Given the evident similarities in their overall characteristics, Dhanush may simply be the new name for the original Sagarika system. However, since the Dhanush is reported by some sources to have a 350 km range, compared to the 250-300 km range of the Sagarika, the change in designation may reflect a design change.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


 China and Pakistan should pay attention to India’s newest anti-ship missile, the BrahMos. It is an anti-ship missile with a 660-pound warhead. It has a highly sophisticated ramjet engine, which speeds a three-ton missile to its target at Mach-3 speed.

In its initial flight trajectory it hugs the sea, making it impossible for jet fighters, anti-missile systems and rapid firing guns to stop it. In its terminal phase, it rises up to the sky and then drops on its prey like a giant harpoon. The missile’s high speed causes extensive damage to a ship on impact and the 660 pounds of explosives it carries cause the rest of the damage.

It can also be described as a sea-denial missile – denying an enemy access to the sea it defends.

The missile, originally called the Yakhont, was designed by the Soviets to kill U.S. aircraft carriers 200 miles away. In 1991 the United States expressed concern about its development and Russian President Boris Yeltsin, a U.S. friend at the time, shelved the project. This turned out to be India’s gain.

India took over the development work in 1998, agreeing to spend over US$250 million on the project. The Russian missile engine was married to an Indian guidance system in a 50:50 partnership, thus giving it the unique name of BrahMos, after India’s Brahmaputra River and Russia’s Moskva River.

The Chinese asked the Russians for similar collaboration on a similar missile system, but were flatly turned down. Instead the Russians equipped Chinese destroyers with Moskit class sea-skimming ramjet missiles. These are very capable missiles with a range of 90 to 150 kilometers. But these could neither be launched from aircraft nor have land-to-land use.

India expects about US$10 billion in orders for these missiles. The production line is gearing up to make 1,000 of these in various versions over the next ten years. If an additional export order for 1,000 more missiles is obtained the production line will have to be significantly expanded. Right now there no export orders – that will limit production to about 50-100 missiles a year.

A comparable missile in the U.S. inventory is the Tomahawk cruise missile, which has an extended range and larger explosive payload than others. But it is a subsonic missile, and thus can fall prey to fighter jets or anti-air or anti-missile system.

Collaboration between the Russians and Indians has produced a marvelous weapon. Future collaboration between the two nations is in the cards, in developing a fifth-generation fighter jet, a new tank design, etc. This is helpful to both countries. The Russians can defray the development costs and India gets a sophisticated weapon. Barring a few hiccups this collaboration will continue.

India has no intention of killing U.S. aircraft carriers, hence its development and operation were not questioned by the United States. On the other hand, a Chinese naval flotilla approaching the Indian Ocean on an aggressive mission would be fair game for this missile.

The same is true of any aggressive moves by the Pakistani Navy. The latter has always envisioned attacking India’s offshore oil and gas fields close to Mumbai, and repeating the Muslim destruction of India’s Somnath Temple on the Gujarat coast, 900 years back.

The version of the BrahMos that went into operation in 2005 is the naval version only. Another version, which can be carried by an aircraft or used in land-to-land combat, is still under development and should be operational in about three years.

Collaboration on the missile’s development was not easy. In 1998 the Russians were strictly following the guidelines of the Missile Technology Control Regime and would not export any missile technology beyond the 300-kilometer (186-mile) range. It also would not give India any help in building a sophisticated guidance system.

Hence this missile has a limited range of 290 kilometers (180 miles) and has an Indian guidance system. All testing and development since 1998 have been carried out in India, with the Russians as a 50-percent partner.

Beginning in 2002 when the missile first flew, it surprised most observers. Few thought that Russian-Indian collaboration could be successful and produce a weapon of that sophistication. Now it is a reality. Some Indian Navy ships are already equipped with it. Soon the air and land version will join the Indian forces, making them highly potent.

This technology acquisition and development was so important for India that the military went out of its way not to draw international attention. Technology transfer arrangements were such that no MTCR guidelines were broken.

Also in India’s neighborhood, Pakistan has acquired U.S. Harpoon and French Exocet missiles, and China has been buying Russian Sovremenny-class destroyers – hence India had to do something unique to put both China and Pakistan on the defensive. It appears that India has now achieved that task.

Although the missile is so successful, India was expecting other nations to order it. But no export orders have been received so far, despite an intense sales pitch over the last three years. None of the potential customers wishes to kill U.S. or other nations’ aircraft carriers; hence they do not need such a powerful weapon. Also, at US$2.5 million apiece the price is a bit steep. The original requirement of 1,000 missiles for the Indian and Russian navies still stands.

The future of this missile in Indian hands is very bright. It will permanently keep the Chinese navy out of the Indian Ocean. Closer to home, the belligerent Pakistan is unmindful of these developments. Their Harpoon missile inventory is very capable, but is subsonic and has a very limited range. The BrahMos, carried on ships and planes, can be fired from 200 miles away and hit its target with pinpoint accuracy.

The scramjet-powered BrahMos-2 will again be developed with Russian collaboration. That is the only way India will lay its hands on scramjet technology. The irony is that the MTCR will prevent its range from exceeding 300 kilometers.

This development work will take three years and will involve 20 Russian and Indian institutes and industrial units to finish the job. The only thing known about this newer missile, the BrahMos-2, is that it will fly at about Mach-5 to Mach-7 speed and will beat any known anti aircraft or anti-missile defense system.

It's a new cruise missile called the Brahmos. And it's what reportedly has Pakistan's defence planners scurrying to develop a land attack cruise missile, possibly a modified Harpoon missile acquired from the US in the 80s and 90s.

Brahmos combines the names of two rivers: the Brahmaputra and the Mosocow. It symbolises the close partnership that exists between India and Russia.

Here's why the Brahmos is considered the world's finest. It can fly at speeds of up to Mach 3, three times the speed of sound. It can destroy ships and targets on land. It can be launched from the air, submarines and onboard ships.

The Brahmos will be deployed on the Sukhoi 30 MKI, the mainstay of the Indian Air Force. The Sukhoi's ability to fly thousands of kilometres after being re-fuelled in-air means that the Brahmos can be used to strike targets across large parts of South Asia.

"It is the fastest and most precise cruise-missile in the world," affirms Pravin Pathak, Additional GM BrahMos Aerospace.

Today, with Russian assistance, and missiles like the Brahmos, the Indian Navy's frontline ships are fitted with the fastest and possibly most lethal anti-ship weapons ever developed

Sunday, April 3, 2011


India's Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL) plans to extend the range of the HELINA (Helicopter-mounted Nag) anti-armour missile into a >20-km range strike munition. HELINA project director KS Vara Prasad has indicated that his team is building a "miniaturised inertial navigation package" to enhance the existing weapon without adding weight or too much cost.

The HELINA, an air-launched variant of the Nag anti-tank missile, has a range of 7-km and has been captive flight-tested, with a scheduled first firing for later this year. The programme director has also revealed that a feasibility study is officially on to integrate the HELINA onto the Rustom-H MALE UAV. More details soon.
India's Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL) plans to extend the range of the HELINA (Helicopter-mounted Nag) anti-armour missile into a >20-km range strike munition. HELINA project director KS Vara Prasad has indicated that his team is building a "miniaturised inertial navigation package" to enhance the existing weapon without adding weight or too much cost.

The HELINA, an air-launched variant of the Nag anti-tank missile, has a range of 7-km and has been captive flight-tested, with a scheduled first firing for later this year. The programme director has also revealed that a feasibility study is officially on to integrate the HELINA onto the Rustom-H MALE UAV


India's navy has issued a request for information for at least 50 light utility helicopters to replace its fleet of Hindustan Aeronautics Chetaks.

The service is seeking a new fleet of twin-engines aircraft, with bidding companies to be required to undertake field evaluation trials in India. Interested vendors must also provide information on how they plan to comply with India's 30% offset rule, the navy says in its tender document.
 To meet its requirements, the selected light utility helicopter must have an all-up weight of not more than 4,500kg (9,920lb) and be capable of carrying at least one lightweight torpedo or two depth charges, the RFI says. There should also be a provision for mounting 12.7mm machine guns and/or a rocket launcher on either side of the aircraft.
 The helicopter must also be able to carry at least four passengers and come with rappelling equipment, rescue winches and be capable of carrying underslung loads.

Other roles for the new aircraft will include search and rescue, casualty evacuation, limited observation and surveillance and anti-submarine warfare tasks, as well as anti-piracy and anti-terrorism activities, the navy says.

The RFI document fails to provide a delivery timeline, but asks vendors to give the earliest schedule possible.

India's current Chetak design was licence-built by HAL, and is a version of the Eurocopter SA316B Alouette III. The aircraft has a maximum take-off weight of 2,200kg, according to HAL.

Flightglobal's HeliCAS database lists the navy as having an active inventory of 32 of the type.
Indian Navy is looking to acquire six to eight Medium-Range Surveillance Aircraft and High Altitude Long Range UAVs. Defence Ministry floated RFIs (request for information) for the surveillance aircrafts and UAVs newspaper reports indicated. Specifications for the Medium-Range Surveillance Aircraft require an operating range of over 350 nautical miles while the requirements for the UAV are service ceiling above 40,000 feet and endurance of over 25 hours.

These come in the aftermath of the 26/11 Mumbai Terror Attacks where Pakistan based terrorists used the sea route to reach Indian soil. India is also conducting a major upgrade for the Coast Guard.