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Day after successful test flight, government clears procurement of 83 Tejas jets for IAF

Tejas, the first Light Combat Aircraft in Final Operational Clearance-standard (SP-21) took to the skies for its maiden flight in Bengaluru on Tuesday.

Published: 18th March 2020 07:59 PM  |   Last Updated: 19th March 2020 10:17 AM   |  A+A-

A Tejas aircraft carrying Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh taxis towards the runway for flying on a sortie at HAL Airport in Bangalore on Thursday. | (Nagaraja Gadekal | EPS)

File Image of Tejas aircraft. (File| Nagaraja Gadekal/ EPS)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: In a big boost to the indigenous defence manufacturing, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) paved the way for procurement of 83 indigenous Tejas fighter aircraft for Air Force. 
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) in its official communiqué said, “DAC paved the way for procurement of 83 of the more advanced Mk1A version of the aircraft from HAL by finalising the contractual and other issues.” The proposal will now be placed for consideration of Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), added MoD. 

The 83 LCA Tejas will be in addition to 40 Tejas aircraft already ordered with HAL in initial configurations. “This procurement will be a major boost to ‘Make in India’ as the aircraft is indigenously designed, developed and manufactured with participation of several local vendors apart from HAL.” MoD said. The DAC meeting chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh was the first meeting after the major change in the Ministry wherein Department of Military Affairs (DMA) was created under the Chief of Defence Staff. 

It is expected to lead to better coordination and faster processing of cases with the Acquisition wing under the DMA being in the overall charge of the Capital acquisition process. The Light Combat Aircraft Tejas indigenously-designed by Aircraft Development Agency (ADA) under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is going to be the backbone of Indian Air Force in future. The Defence Acquisition Council also accorded approval for acquisition of indigenous defence equipment for about `1,300 crore. The proposals were for procurement of aerial fuses and twin-dome simulators for Hawk Mk32 aircraft for the IAF.

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