That could be increased to make USA Happy. A lifter can work without Cismoa and will be ok without critical components but Fighter planes with some sub systems missing or downgraded should not be acceptable. NO to MRCA will force USA to give access to better technology with less restrictions.Numbers will definitely go up.
Having strong airlift capability will compensate for lack of infrastructure on Chinese border. We can always take fight to enemies land with such a strong airlift capability.
C17 has way lot electronics which India might miss if CISMOA & other agreements are not resolved. With that money poured into acquisition of heavy lifters, we definately need related advanced electronics crammed in C17. We need those critical DIRCMs.
I really don't see MRCA relation here. Funds for C17s were already approved. February saw major meeting sessions & so objectives are now gradually agreed.
C17s are way too large & expensive. We have our other lifter fleet to complement chinese border. AN32s, C130s, IL76, upcoming MTAs will be doing great job.
Bringing 25 C17s is sheer mistake. There no point in making such huge investment when they'll be white elephants demanding unjustified maintenenace costs. And on long enough timeline, home-grown product should serve heavy-lift capability if to maintain such large fleet numbers.
Given the respect for deadlines Indians and Russians have and continuous price escalations and delays I am not too optimistic of future. Moreover many of our old airlifters are nearing their life and hence replacement should come on time . But 25 of such systems would be overkill. may be 15-20 .
Up to 20 No. C-17 are more than enough but MRCA is not going to be affected with this deal at least. MMS & Sonia Govt. has committed to save Americans job by purchasing their stuff. This Govt. is sold out to Americans. They are doing all possible things to please the Uncle SAM. I won't be surprised to see if F-teens were selected in MRCA.
It seems to me some important individuals of this govt 's leadership are being blackmailed by Americans for some of their wrongdoings like swiss account & corruption details etc. At present U.S. involvement/interference in Indian polity is very deep.
Its not just this government...any govt. from the entire Indian political spectrum would have done the same, given the ongoing American rhetoric & the economic mess they are in. It's only a matter of political expediency & scoring brownie points from the press-public, when any of the politicos, express outrage at such sold-out deals. Wikileaks regularly confirm that.
You are right Ace...there isn't much point is repeating the obvious....everyone realizes that Sonia-MMS cronies/scoundrels company, running the show currently, is the most brazenly corrupt dispensation, at center ever in Indian history.
I personally would not care if you shout pro or anti american. But when Bush Jr signed the nuke 123 deal with MMS in 2005, he was hailed as "India's true friend", "a great president" and a load of other bullshit by most Indians, ignoring all his glaring shortcomings. Did anyone think that there would be no repercussions? Now Obama is bad because he expects India to buy american products and MMS is bad because he buys them? The real deal was struck back in 2005 and I doubt if anyone complained in India. So, now why all the BS?
NEW DELHI: India may have ejected American fighters out of the $10.4 billion race to supply 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) but US really has no reason to crib. Decks have now been cleared for the biggest-ever Indo-US defence deal: the $4.1 billion contract for 10 C-17 Globemaster-III giant strategic airlift aircraft.
Defence ministry sources on Thursday said the Globemaster deal, a direct government-to-government contract under the American FMS (foreign military sales) programme, should get the "final nod" from the Cabinet Committee on Security "within this month".
"All issues connected to costing and offsets (under which Globemaster-manufacturer Boeing will plough back 30% of the contract value into India) have been resolved," said a source.
IAF certainly needs to augment its strategic airlift capability to swiftly move combat systems and troops over large national and international distances, given that it has just over a dozen Russian-origin IL-76 `Gajraj' aircraft. Capable of carrying a payload of almost 170,000 pounds and landing even at small forward airbases with semi-prepared runways, the four-engine rugged C-17s can transport tanks and troops over 2,400 nautical miles.
With mid-air refueling, C-17s can go even longer distances. Along with the C-130J `Super Hercules' aircraft already being inducted, the C-17s will play a significant role in countering China's massive build-up of military infrastructure all along the 4,057-km Line of Actual Control, which includes five fully-operational airbases in Tibet.
That's not all on the US arms deals front. India is already conducting commercial negotiations for the around $1 billion "follow-on contract" for four more P-8I Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, eight of which were earlier ordered for $2.1 billion in 2009.
Similarly, negotiations for six more C-130J `Super Hercules' heavy-lift aircraft will begin soon. "IAF has already inducted two of the earlier six C-130Js ordered for $1.2 billion in 2008. Two more will come around July, with the last two in September-October," said the MoD source.
So, if all this is taken into account, US has notched up sales worth around $9 billion to India in the arena of military transport and reconnaissance aircraft alone.
If one adds other deals connected to military aviation, like the $822 million for 99 GE F-414 engines for Mark-II version of the indigenous Tejas Light Combat Aircraft and the $170 million for Harpoon Block-II anti-ship missiles, as well as the proposed ones for attack and heavy-lift helicopters, the overall figure will jump to well over $11 billion.
Consequently, all the brouhaha over India choosing a fighter over "a strategic partnership" in the MMRCA project has not gone down well. "We went purely by IAF's technical and flight evaluation in the MMRCA project," said the MoD source.
"While Eurofighter Typhoon and French Rafale were right up there in the laid-down 643 test-points, the others (American F/A-18 and F-16, Russian MiG-35 and Swedish Gripen) were not fully compliant. So, now Typhoon and Rafale will compete commercially for the project," he added.
Order for C-17 Globemaster to be cleared this month
The much-awaited order for the American C-17 Globemaster heavy-lift transport aircraft for the Indian Air Force will be cleared this month. The IAF’s order for 10 aircraft is expected to cost some 18,000 crore (roughly $4 billion).
The Ministry of Defence has given the go-ahead for the purchase of these aircraft from the U.S. through the Foreign Military Sales (government-to-government) route.
Sources in the government told The Hindu that the Defence Ministry had forwarded the file to the Ministry of Finance before it was taken to the Cabinet Committee on Security for final approval. The deal was expected to be cleared “within this month.”
The U.S was pushing for the deal — originally estimated to cost up to $5.8 billion — to be ready by the time President Barack Obama visited India in November last year. However, price and offsets issues held it up. And, on his part, President Obama mentioned India’s intention to but these aircraft for some $4.1 billion.
The Boeing C-17 Globemaster will augment the IAF’s inventory, which recently went up with the induction of the C130J Super Hercules transport aircraft from another U.S. company Lockheed Martin. These aircraft would allow the IAF to swiftly move a greater number of troops and materials than its existing transport fleet of AN-32 and Il-76 ‘Gajraj,’ inducted more than two decades ago.
While the U.S. may have been “deeply disappointed” at having lost the race for the 45,000-crore 126 Medium Multi-role Combat Aircraft, the IAF and the Indian Navy together have ordered or in the process of buying aircraft worth $9 billion from the two American defence aviation majors.
Two years ago, India ordered eight long-range maritime patrol aircraft P8I at $2.1 billion, and there has already been talk of a follow-up order for four more aircraft. Boeing is developing the P8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft for the U.S. and has offered the Indian Navy a variant of it.
These purchases are in addition to the CB105 Sensor Fuzed Weapons for the IAF ordered from Textron Defense Systems, valued at $380 million. Trials are under way for the purchase of 145 Ultra Light Howitzer Field Guns from the BEA Systems.
There has been much criticism of the Defence Ministry’s tendency to buy military hardware from the U.S. through the Foreign Military Sales route, instead of a multi-vendor bidding process. The Ministry reasons that this policy is dictated by the urgent need of the forces for such equipment.