India clears $6.25 billion deal to acquire 83 LCA Tejas combat jets


LCA Tejas News: In a major boost to domestic defence industry, India’s Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi today approved the largest ever indigenous defence purchase of 83 combat jets manufactured by the state owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.

India’s defence minister Rajnath Singh told the media that the CCS chaired by the Prime Minister Modi approved the deal worth about Rs 45,696 crore ($6.25 billion) to strengthen IAF’s fleet of homegrown fighter jet LCA-Tejas.

“This deal will be a game-changer for self-reliance in Indian defence manufacturing,” said defence minister Rajnath Singh.

The deal to acquire 83 LCA Tejas aircrafts was cleared by the highest decision making body in the ministry of defence, the defence acquisition council (DAC), in March 2020.

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However, it took almost a year to get the approval of the Union cabinet which will pave the way for singing of a formal contract between the ministry of defence and the aircraft manufacturer.

Under the deal, Indian Air Force will get 83 LCA Tejas aircrafts, 73 LCA Mk-1A aircraft and 10 LCA Mk-1 fighters.


LCA Tejas.

According to reports, the defence ministry is likely to place another order for 40 more Tejas fighters.

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LCA Tejas aircraft

Rajnath Singh said the upgraded version of homegrown fighter jet, LCA Tejas, will form the backbone of the IAF fighter fleet in years to come

Tejas Mark 1A version incorporates a large number of new technologies, many of which were never before attempted in India, said the minister.

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The Mark A1 version of the fighter jet will have 43 improvements over the initial version, including major improvements to enhance operational capability.

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These include easier maintenance, active electronically scanned array radar, electronic warfare suite and beyond-visual range missile capabilities.

Indian Air Force will equip Tejas fighter with indigenous air-to-air beyond visual range (BVR) missile Aastra Mark1 developed by the DRDO.

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