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An L&T-Russian partnership

The selection of a Russian partner would conform to India's 30-year submarine plan

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Defence Ministry  |  Scorpene  |  Defence

Ajai Shukla  |  New Delhi 

Ajai Shukla

Embattled by the controversy over the procurement of 36 Rafale fighters from France, the ministry is initiating a slew of acquisitions, worth almost Rs 4 trillion. These would take years to fructify but would allow the Bharatiya Janata Party to claim while campaigning for elections that it was safeguarding India’s . These include the procurement of 110 fighter aircraft worth about Rs 1.25 trillion, 57 naval fighters worth Rs 750 billion, S-400 air defence systems worth Rs 400 billion, artillery guns worth Rs 150 billion, rifles worth Rs 100 billion, warships worth Rs 350 billion and two naval helicopter purchases for an estimated Rs 250 billion. All these are, while urgently needed, potentially controversial. But there is a low-hanging fruit: Project 75-I — a Rs 400-billion purchase that is operationally vital, relatively non-controversial and which includes a sizeable component of “Make in India”. This involves building six submarines in the country, with an Indian vendor taking essential technology from a foreign original equipment manufacturer (OEM).

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First Published: Mon, September 10 2018. 23:13 IST
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