Wednesday, June 29, 2011

india ready to face both china and pakistan ata time

China's hostile attitude towards India and its supply to Pakistan of advanced weaponry (most recently the Z9EC anti-submarine helicopter) is driving India in to a weapons acquisition and modernisation spree. Just in the last week, Indian media reported that China has been issuing loose-sheet visas to Indian citizens from the state of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K), in effect, saying for the first time that China does not recognise J&K as Indian territory. Further, the impressive display of Chinese military power at its National Day parade on 1 October has not gone unnoticed in India.

India is responding by building roads, railways and infrastructure on the Chinese border. Last week it was reported that 5 civil airports in forward areas will be transferred directly to the armed forces. In September, a Russian An-32 transport aircraft made its first landing in Nyoma and 50 more Sukhois may be purchased in addition to the 230 already ordered and the 126 to be ordered as per the MMRCA tender. Israel is already building the second airborne early warning (AEW) plane on the Ilyushin platform and the reported US$100 million deal for IAI's Harop unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) which will be inducted by 2011. India is also planning to deploy various radars along the entire border with both China and Pakistan. This includes Low level light weight radars and 30 indigenous Rohini radars are expected to be ordered at a cost of about US$400 million. Other jinxed but significant acquisitions will be the 22 attack helicopters and 400 howitzers which will be worth another US$3 billion. The development of the Agni-V missile is also being pushed and additional land to develop the BrahMos II is being acquired.

On 24 September the Indian Ministry of Defence also issued a Request for Information (RFI) for 300 Light Tanks of which 200 will be wheeled and 100 will be tracked. The diesel-engine tanks will be deployed in High Altitude Areas above 3,000m and will be capable of operating in mountainous, semi-developed terrain. The amphibious tanks are expected to be capable of destroying bunkers and "soft-skin vehicles" at ranges up to 3km and also against attack helicopters and low flying fixed wing aircraft.