Sunday, October 4, 2009

India’s next big buy is a missile from US




India is looking at the possibility of yet another major government-to-government military deal with the United States. The army headquarters is in the advanced stages of evaluating the Javelin anti-tank missile for large-scale induction. If the missile suits India, it could lead to another FMS (foreign military sale) deal with the US, without competitive international tendering, and possibly even without extensive field trials.

The arrangement, if it works out, would be a strong signal about India’s intention to continue taking in US military products despite hiccups in bilateral ties that cropped up since the Obama administration took charge in the US. Sources said the deal could run into several hundred million dollars. It is not clear how the induction of Javelin would affect the indigenously developed Nag anti-tank missiles, which were cleared for production this July after two decades of trials and research. The Indian Army has ordered 443 Nag missiles and 13 missile carriers.

Since the Nag was on the drawing board for several years, the Army started desperately looking for new generation anti-tank missiles to penetrate modern day tanks. As of now, the Army has old Milan missiles, a European product, and the Russian Konkours, both of which are manufactured in India under licence at the Bharat Dynamics Limited.

Last summer, India was looking to purchase the Israeli anti-tank missile, Spike, but that plan had to be abandoned after the missile failed miserably at the trials in Pokhran. It may just be a coincidence that the Army has not opted for international competitive tendering for buying the missile, and it fits into the larger trend emerging in military purchases — of minimal competitive tendering, and preference for non-tender purchases.

Beneficiaries of this easy route are Israel, US, and to some extent Russia. While purchases from Israel and US are mostly new, Russia is the beneficiary of “repeat orders” on the Sukhoi-30 MKI and MIG-29K fighters as well as helicopters.

3 comments:

Nag is not a man portable ATGM like Javelin but of a bigger class. Another stupid article comparing oranges with apples.

Nag is not failure , It has already placed ordered by indian armed forces .india should try to get TOT of Javelin man portable anti-tank missile.

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