India to scrap Rs. 6,000-cr deal for minesweepers

Discussion in 'Indian Navy' started by AVERAGE INDIAN, Oct 14, 2014.

  1. AVERAGE INDIAN

    AVERAGE INDIAN EXORCIST Senior Member

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    Middlemen may have sunk another key defence deal barely 10 months after India terminated a Rs. 3,727-crore VVIP chopper deal mired in corruption allegations.

    The NDA government is all set to scrap a Rs. 6,000-crore deal to buy eight mine counter-measure vessels from South Korea amid allegations that the firm shortlisted to supply the minesweepers had hired middlemen to swing things in its favour.

    Middlemen aren’t allowed in the Indian defence sector. A top defence ministry official told HT, “The deal is on the verge of being cancelled. It was not above board.”

    The decision to scrap the deal will hurt the navy as its minesweeping capabilities are at an all-time low and a fresh tender will add to the force’s agonising wait – the procurement of minesweepers will be delayed by five to six years.

    Under the proposed deal, South Korean shipyard Kangnam Corporation was to supply two minesweepers to the navy, while the remaining six vessels were to be built by Goa Shipyard Limited through technology transfer.

    These vessels are used for keeping sea lanes mine-free to protect the country’s warships as well as clearing minefields near enemy shores to facilitate offensive action. The navy currently operates seven to eight serviceable minesweepers, acquired from the erstwhile Soviet Union in the late 1970s.

    India had picked Kangnam Corporation over Italian firm Intermarine for supplying the minesweepers three years ago after the South Korean shipyard offered a cheaper deal. Negotiations, however, hit a hurdle after Intermarine approached the Central Vigilance Commission alleging irregularities in the process.

    The defence ministry had four months ago encashed a Rs. 3-crore bank guarantee furnished by the South Korean firm after the alleged role of middlemen came to light.

    After taking over on May 26, the new government has revisited the UPA’s policy of blacklisting defence firms at the drop of a hat. The NDA government appears to be striking a balance between the need to punish defence contractors who may have violated the law and to keep the armed forces battle ready.

    In August, the government decided it would not allow Finmeccanica, whose UK-based subsidiary AgustaWestland is facing bribery allegations in the VVIP chopper deal, to take part in future military tenders till further notice. But ongoing contracts with the Italian defence major would continue.

    Likewise, India has frozen all contracts with British engineering giant Rolls-Royce (RR) following a bribery scandal but orders for supply of spare parts for aircraft engines are being approved on a case-by-case basis after assessing urgency, as first reported by HT on July 23.

    It remains to be seen what action the government will take against Kangnam Corporation.

    India to scrap Rs 6,000-cr deal for minesweepers - Hindustan Times
     
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  3. Bheeshma

    Bheeshma Regular Member

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    Why can't we build minesweepers based on the catamaran design by Alcock ashdown?
     
  4. sgarg

    sgarg Senior Member Senior Member

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    I think this contract will be given to the local industry.
     
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  5. SilentKiller

    SilentKiller Regular Member

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    don't know but as of latest updates available, indian shipyards don't have tech to make minesweepers.
    contract was to make first few in korea and rest in indian shipyards. maybe some private player will get involved.
     
  6. Hari Sud

    Hari Sud Senior Member Senior Member

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    Any names on the agents used by South Korea.
     
  7. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    Either we build it at home, or we do without.

    It's a shame that we are building an aircraft carrier, and a second nuclear submarine, and giving contract to South Korea?

    I don't recall South Korea being known to have prowess in building warships.
     
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  8. Bheeshma

    Bheeshma Regular Member

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    They can build ships but usually based on US/German tech.
     
  9. laughingbuddha

    laughingbuddha Regular Member

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  10. Bheeshma

    Bheeshma Regular Member

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    Yup using Aegis from lockheed and even type-209.
     
  11. Bheeshma

    Bheeshma Regular Member

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    Point is why cant a piddly 600 tonne ship be made in India.
     
  12. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    It can be made in India.

    I am willing to accept the argument that certain specialized instruments required for minesweeping might not be possible to be made in India, and for those, we could buy them off the shelf from abroad or buy ToT. The ship, can certainly be made in India.
     
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  13. sgarg

    sgarg Senior Member Senior Member

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    I think these ships can be made in India. If something has not been made before, this is not an indicator that it cannot be made. There is always first time for everything.

    Buying from abroad may be convenient (faster), but better way is to build ships locally. India has many shipyards, many are facing lack of orders.

    The tendering has been very problematic in defence field, specially when many foreign firms are involved. The MOD and forces culture is not suitable for complex acquisitions.

    All ships have some import content. This is not a big issue. Engines and instruments can be imported.

    India does build sonars etc.
     
  14. ladder

    ladder Senior Member Senior Member

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    sorcerer likes this.
  15. sorcerer

    sorcerer Senior Member Senior Member

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    ^^ Great move. Warship deal to be Indian..
    Thats the way aha aha I laaaik it uhha uhha!!
     

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