DRDO conducts maiden trial of Python-5 Air to Air Missile: Key Points

DRDO conducts maiden trial of Python-5 Air to Air Missile: Tejas, India’s indigenous Light Combat Aircraft, added the 5th generation Python-5 Air-to-Air Missile (AAM) in its air-to-air weapons capability on April 27, 2021. Trials were also aimed to validate enhanced capability of already integrated Derby Beyond Visual Range (BVR) AAM on Tejas.

The test firing at Goa completed a series of missile trials to validate its performance under extremely challenging scenarios. Derby missile achieved direct hit on a high-speed maneuvering aerial target and the Python missiles also achieved 100% hits, thereby validating their complete capability. The trials met all their planned objectives.

India China Expanding Engagements

DRDO conducts maiden trial of Python-5 Air to Air Missile

Prior to these trials, extensive missile carriage flight tests were conducted at Bengaluru to assess integration of the missile with aircraft systems on board the Tejas, like Avionics, Fire-control radar, Missile Weapon Delivery System and the Flight Control System.

At Goa, after successful separation trials, live launch of the missile on a Banshee target was carried out. Python-5 missile live firing was conducted to validate target engagement from all aspects as well as beyond visual ranges. In all the live firings, missile hit the aerial target.

India China Expanding Engagements

The missiles were fired from Tejas aircraft of Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) flown by Indian Air Force (IAF) Test pilots belonging to National Flight Test Centre (NFTC). The successful conduct was made possible with years of hard work by the team of scientists, engineers and technicians from ADA and HAL-ARDC along with admirable support from CEMILAC, DG-AQA, IAF PMT, NPO (LCA Navy) and INS HANSA.

Defence Minister Shri Rajnath Singh has congratulated the teams of DRDO, ADA, Indian Air Force, HAL and all involved in the trial. Secretary Department of Defence R&D and Chairman DRDO Dr G Satheesh Reddy appreciated the efforts of scientists, engineers and technicians from various organizations and industry.

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General MM Naravane visit to Bangladesh: Key Points

General MM Naravane visit to Bangladesh:  Continuing with the excellent tradition of strong bilateral and defence ties between India and Bangladesh, General MM Naravane, Chief of the Army Staff has proceeded on a visit to Bangladesh from 08 to 12 April 2021. General Naravane’s visit comes in the midst of Swarnim Vijay Varsh celebrations which mark 50 years of the liberation of Bangladesh, made possible by the historic leadership of the Bôngobondhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and heroics of the Mukti Bahini who fought shoulder to shoulder with Indian Armed Forces.

General MM Naravane visit to Bangladesh: Key Points

The Army Chief will pay tributes to the martyrs of the Liberation War by laying a wreath at the Shikha Anirban on 08 April 2021. This will be followed by one to one meetings with the three Service Chiefs of the Bangladesh’s Armed Forces. General Naravane will also visit the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Museum in Dhanmondi, where he will pay tributes to Bangladesh’s founding father.

The COAS will interact with Bangladesh’s Minister of Foreign Affairs on 11 April 2021 at Bangladesh Army’s Multipurpose Complex in Dhaka where he will attend a seminar on UN Peace Support Operations and deliver a keynote address on “Changing Nature of Global Conflicts: Role of UN Peacekeepers”

General MM Naravane is also scheduled to interact with the Force Commanders of the United Nations Missions in Mali, South Sudan and Central African Republic and the Deputy Chief Operations Officer of the Royal Bhutanese Army on 12 April 2021. He will also attend the closing ceremony of Exercise Shantir Ogrosena, a multilateral UN-mandated counterterrorism exercise comprising the Armed Forces of India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Sri Lanka along with observers from the US, UK, Turkey and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia among others. The Chief will also witness the innovations of the Bangladeshi Armed Forces personnel during the Hardware Display.

The Chief of the Army Staff will interact with the members of Bangladesh Institute of Peace Support and Training Operations (BIPSOT) during the last leg of his visit.

This visit will further deepen the bilateral relationships between the two Armies and act as a catalyst for closer coordination and cooperation between the two countries on a host of strategic issues.

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Indian Navy Ships and Aircraft to participate in exercise La Perouse

 

Indian Navy Ships and Aircraft to participate in exercise La Perouse

Indian Navy Ships and Aircraft to participate in exercise La Perouse: Indian Navy Ships INS Satpura (with an integral helicopter embarked) and INS Kiltan alongwith P8I Long Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft are participating, for the first time; in multi-lateral maritime exercise La Pérouse, being conducted in the Eastern Indian Ocean Region from 05 to 07 Apr 2021. The Indian Navy ships and aircraft will exercise at sea with ships and aircraft of French Navy (FN), Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Japan Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF) and United States Navy (USN) during the three day exercise at sea.

The exercise La Pérouse, led by French Navy, has participation by FN Ships Tonnerre, an amphibious assault ship and frigate Surcouf. United States Navy is represented in the exercise by amphibious transport dock ship Somerset. Her Majesty’s Australian Ships (HMAS) Anzac, a frigate and tanker Sirius have been deployed by RAN for participation in the exercise while Japan Maritime Self Defence Ship (JMSDF) is represented by the destroyer Akebono. In addition to the ships, integral helicopters embarked onboard ships will also participate in the exercise.

Exercise La Pérouse will witness complex and advanced naval operations including surface warfare, anti-air warfare and air defence exercises, weapon firing exercises, cross deck flying operations, tactical manoeuvres and seamanship evolutions such as replenishment at sea.

The exercise will showcase high levels of synergy, coordination and inter-operability between the friendly navies. Participation by the Indian Navy in the exercise demonstrates the shared values with friendly navies ensuring freedom of seas and commitment to an open, inclusive Indo-Pacific and a rules-based international order.

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Indian Army Formally Closes Down Military Farms: All you need to know

Indian Army Formally Closes Down Military Farms: Military Farms were set up with sole requirement of supplying hygienic cow’s milk to troops billeted in various garrisons across British India. First Military farm was raised on 01 Feb 1889 at Allahabad. After independence Military Farms flourished with 30,000 heads of cattle in 130 Military Farms all over India in varied Agro-climatic conditions.

Indian Army Formally Closes Down Military Farms: All you need to know

Military Farms were even established in Leh and Kargil in late 1990s, with the role of supply of fresh and hygienic milk to troops at their locations on daily basis. Another major task was management of large tracts of defence land, production and supply of Baled Hay to animal holding units.

For more than a century Military Farms with their dedication and commitment supplied 3.5 crore ltr of milk and 25000 MT of hay yearly. It is credited with pioneering the technique of Artificial Insemination of cattle and introduction of organised Dairying in India, providing yeoman service during 1971 war, supplying milk at the Western and Eastern war fronts as well as during Kargil operations to the Northern Command.

In collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, they established “Project Freiswal”, credited to be the world’s largest cattle cross-breeding program. They also teamed up with DRDO in development of Bio-Fuel.

After 132 years of glorious service to the nation, curtains were drawn on this organisation. All the officers and workers have been redeployed within the ministry to continue providing service to the organisation.

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MoD allows use of military ranks by retired Short Service Commission officers

Ministry of Defence (MoD) has decided to allow the retired Short Service Commission (SSC) officers of the Army to use military ranks as applicable. The SSC officers, after completion of their mandated terms and conditions of service, had not been authorized to use the military ranks. This has been causing dissatisfaction and discontentment among the SSC officers who serve under the same service conditions and face similar hardships as Permanent Commission officers with similar Service profile.

This decision of the Government will not only remove dissatisfaction and discontentment among the retired SSC officers, but will serve as a big boost to the young aspirants. In addition, this decision will act as morale booster for the existing SSC officers.

The demand for use of military ranks by Short Service Commission (SSC) officers after release from service has been pending since 1983. The SSC officers form the backbone of the support cadre of the Army. They serve for a period of 10-14 years to make up the deficiency of young officers in units. There have been several attempts of making the SSC attractive. Permission to allow use of military ranks by these officers has been one of their major demands.

Unlike in the past when SSC officers used to serve for a period of five years, now they serve for a tenure of 10 years, further extendable by four years. The SSC officers provide a support cadre to the officers’ cadre of the Army and has been created primarily to provide young officers to the units.

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Indian Army DE-Commissions 130mm and 160mm Mortars from Service: Key Points

Indian Army DE-Commissions 130mm and 160mm Mortars from Service: Two of the longest serving Artillery systems, the 130mm Self Propelled M-46 Catapult Guns and the 160mm Tampella Mortars were decommissioned today at Mahajan Field Firing Ranges. The ceremony was marked by the customary firing of last salvos. The decommissioning firing was attended by Lt Gen K Ravi Prasad, Director General Artillery and other senior officers.

The 130mm Catapult, with a range of more than 27 km, was a successful merger of two existing weapon systems: Vijayanta tanks and 130mm M-46 guns. This hybrid platform was a response to the need for a mobile Artillery gun system to support strike formations on the Western borders, after the 1965 and 1971 wars. The guns were inducted in 1981 and were employed successfully during a number of operations.

The 160mm Tampella mortars, with a range of 9.6km, were inducted after the 1962 war with China to fulfill the need for a weapon system to clear high crests of the Northern borders. Originally an import from the Israeli Defence Forces, this mortar was successfully deployed on the Line of Control in the Leepa valley and the Hajipir Bowl and played a crucial part in maintaining the sanctity of the Line of Control. The mortars also played a significant part in the 1999 Kargil war.

These weapon systems, having been in the inventory of the Indian Army for close to 60 years, have been decommissioned to make way for newer equipment employing the latest technologies.

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INS Karanj, Third Kalvari class Submarine commissioned: Key points

INS Karanj, Third Kalvari class Submarine commissioned:  Indian Navy’s third stealth Scorpene class Submarine INS Karanj has been commissioned today at the Naval Dockyard Mumbai through a formal commissioning ceremony.  Admiral VS Shekhawat PVSM, AVSM, VrC (Retd), former Chief of the Naval Staff, who was part of the commissioning crew of the old Karanj and later the Commanding officer during the 1971 Indo – Pak war, was the Chief Guest for the ceremony. Six Scorpene Class submarines are being built in India by the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) Mumbai, under collaboration with M/s Naval Group, France. INS Karanj would form part of the Western Naval Command’s Submarine fleet and would be another potent part of the Command’s arsenal.

Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, and other senior officers from the Indian Navy and MoD were amongst the several dignitaries who witnessed the commissioning ceremony.  Crew of the erstwhile ‘Karanj’, a Russian origin Foxtrot Class Submarine which was decommissioned in 2003 were also special invitees for the ceremony. During his address, the CNS said “this impetus to Indigenisation & AatmaNirbharBharat is a fundamental tenet of Indian Navy’s growth story and future operational capabilities”.

The Chief Guest Admiral Shekhawat also highlighted India’s push towards AatmaNirbharta by saying “we live in an India launching numerous satellites, building nuclear submarines, manufacturing vaccines for the worlds – the new Karanj is another example of it”

This year is being celebrated as the ‘Swarnim Vijay Varsh’ which marks 50 years of 1971 Indo – Pak war. Old INS Karanj, commissioned on 04 Sep 1969 at Riga in the erstwhile USSR, also took active part in the conflict under the Command of then Cdr VS Shekhawat. In recognition of the valiant action of her officers and crew, a number of personnel were decorated, including award of Vir Chakra to the then Commanding Officer Cdr VS Shekhawat. Interestingly, the commissioning Commanding Officer of the old INS Karanj Cdr MNR Samant later on became the first Chief of The Naval Staff of the newly formed Bangladesh Navy in the year 1971.

The Scorpene Submarines are one of the most advanced conventional submarines in the world. These platforms are equipped with the latest technologies in the world. More deadly and stealthier than their predecessors, these submarines are equipped with potent weapons and sensors to neutralise any threat above or below the sea surface.

The induction of Karanj is another step towards the Indian Navy, consolidating its position as a builder’s Navy, as also is a reflection of MDL’s capabilities as a premier ship and submarine building yard of the world. Project – 75 also marks a critical milestone in the Yard’s continued importance in the field of Defence Production

Source: PIB

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Details of Defence Budget 2020-21: Key points with Analysis

Modernisation of Armed Forces is a systematic process carried out as per the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP)/ Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP). The modernisation process aims at keeping the Indian Armed Forces in state of operational readiness and optimally equipped with modern weapon systems. The budget allocation for modernisation of defence equipment is utilized to meet the operational requirement of the Armed Forces and for acquisitions of contemporary systems based on the planned priorities of the Defence Forces. DPP/DAP accords highest priority to Buy Indian (Indigenously Designed, Developed and Manufactured) (IDDM). Government has put in place enablers to achieve higher level of the indigenization and self-reliance in the defence sector by harnessing the capabilities of the public and private sector industries in the country.

The Details of Budget Estimates 2020-21, Revised Estimate 2020-21 and Budget Estimate 2021-22 on the Modernisation (Capital Acquisition) of Armed Forces, under Defence Service Estimate (DSE) is as under:

(Value in Rs. crore)

  Budget Estimates

2020-21

Revised Estimates

2020-21

Budget Estimates

2021-22

Capital Acquisition

(Modernisation)

90,047.80 1,14,320.30 1,11,463

 

During last five financial year (2015-16 to 2019-20) and current year (upto January 2021), 304 contracts were signed. Out of total 304 contracts, 190 contracts have been signed with Indian vendors for capital procurement of defence equipment for Armed Forces.

In May, 2001, the Defence Industry sector, which was hitherto reserved for the public sector, was opened up to 100% for Indian private sector participation, with Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) up to 26% both subject to licensing. Further, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce & Industry vide Press Note No. 4 (2020 Series), has allowed FDI under automatic route upto 74% and above 74% through government route wherever it is likely to result in access to modern technology or for other reasons to be recorded. In addition, 44 FDI proposals / Joint Ventures have been approved so far in defence sector for manufacturing of various defence equipments. FDI inflows of over Rs. 4191 crores have been reported by the defence and aerospace sector till January, 2021.

In addition, following provisions have been made in Defence Acquisition Procedure(DAP) -2020 for tie-ups with foreign companies for manufacture of defence equipment in the country:-

  1. Under Buy and Make (Indian) category, Indian vendor(s) can tie-up with a foreign Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), for indigenous production involving transfer of technology of critical technologies.
  2. Buy(Global-Manufacture in India) category refers to an outright purchase of equipment from foreign vendors, in quantities as considered necessary, followed by indigenous manufacture of the entire/part of the equipment and spares/assemblies/sub-assemblies/maintenance along with repair and overhaul (MRO) facility(only in cases where these are part of the main contract) for the equipment, through its subsidiary in India/through a Joint Venture/through an Indian Production Agency(PA)(with ToT of critical technologies to the Indian PA), meeting a minimum of 50 % Indigenous Content (IC) on cost basis of the Base Contract price.
  3. Government has notified the ‘Strategic Partnership (SP)’ Model in May 2017, which envisages establishment of long-term strategic partnerships with Indian entities through a transparent and competitive process, wherein they would tie up with global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to seek technology transfers to set up domestic manufacturing infrastructure and supply chains.
  4. Under the offset guidelines of DAP-2020, following avenues have been made available for discharge of offset obligations: –
  • Investment in defence manufacturing: This could be through FDI or direct investment or joint ventures or through the non-equity route for co-production, co-development and production or licensed production of defence products.
  • Investment in ToT to Indian enterprises for manufacture of eligible products.
  • Acquisition of technology through ToT to Government institutions and establishments engaged in the manufacture and/or maintenance of eligible products as listed in DAP-2020.

In order to encourage discharge of Offset obligation in investment of defence manufacturing and Transfer of Technology, higher multipliers have been assigned in the revised Offset policy under DAP-2020.

 

Following initiatives have been taken to facilitate Defence Public Sector Enterprises (DPSUs), Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) and Private Defence Players to explore business opportunities abroad:

  1. Export Promotion cell has been constituted to co-ordinate and follow-up on export related action including enquiries received from various countries and facilitate private sector and public sector companies for export promotion.
  2. Defence Attaches in Indian Missions abroad, have been mandated for export promotion of Indigenous defence products of both public and private sector. A scheme for Export promotion of Indian Defence Equipment manufactured in India has also been rolled out wherein Defence Attachés are provided financial support to promote export of indigenous defence equipment abroad.
  3. Subject to strategic and diplomatic considerations, domestically manufactured defence products are promoted through Lines of Credit/Gratis. Defence Lines of Credit (LOCs)/Gratis are extended to identified Friendly Foreign Countries (FFCs) to enable them to import Defence goods and services from India on attractive terms.
  4. Geographical countries/regions have been allocated to DPSUs/OFB for establishment of their offices in various countries to promote export of Indigenous defence platforms/equipment.
  5. An online portal has been created through which export leads received from various countries are disseminated directly to the Indian Defence Exporters who are registered on the portal.
  6. Webinars in coordination with Indian Missions abroad, DPSUs/OFB and Private Industry Associations have been organised with 15 Foreign Friendly Countries during the year 2020-21 to promote defence exports.

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First ever visit by Indian Naval Ships to the historic port city of Mongla, Bangladesh: Key Points

 

First ever visit by Indian Naval Ships to the historic port city of Mongla, Bangladesh: Key Points

First ever visit by Indian Naval Ships to the historic port city of Mongla, Bangladesh: Indian Naval Ships Sumedha, an indigenously build Offshore Patrol vessel  and Kulish, an indigenously built guided missile corvette, are scheduled to make a port call at the historic port town of Mongla in Bangladesh from 8th to 10th March 2021 to commemorate the ongoing Swarnim Vijay Varsh and reiterating the historic Indo-Bangladeshi friendship.

This is the first time that any Indian Naval Ship is visiting the port of Mongla in Bangladesh and the visit is aimed at paying homage to the Bangladeshi and Indian combatants and citizens who laid down their lives during the Liberation War of 1971, and reiterate India’s firm resolve and commitment to maintain peace, stability and good order in the region, in line with SAGAR – Security and Growth for all in the Region, as articulated by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India.

On behalf of the Chief of Naval Staff, the Commanding Officers of the ships will call on the senior Bangladesh Navy hierarchy to reaffirm Indian Navy’s solidarity and partnership with the Bangladesh Navy. Following all Covid-19 protocols, the ships’ crew will also participate in professional and cultural exchanges as well as friendly sports fixtures with their counterparts in the Bangladesh Navy, further enhancing synergy between the two navies.

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Indian Air Force Participation in EX Desert FLAG VI: Key Points

Indian Air Force Participation in EX Desert FLAG VI: Ex Desert Flag is an annual multi-national large force employment warfare exercise hosted by the United Arab Emirates Air Force. The Indian Air Force is participating for the first time in Exercise Desert Flag-VI along with air forces of United Arab Emirates, United States of America, France, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Bahrain. The exercise is scheduled from 03 Mar 21 to 27 Mar 21 at Al-Dhafra airbase, UAE.

Indian Air Force Participation in EX Desert FLAG VI

The IAF is participating with six Su-30 MKI, two C-17 and one IL-78 tanker aircraft. C-17 Globemaster will provide support for induction/ de-induction of the IAF contingent. Su-30 MKI aircraft will undertake long range ferry, routing direct from India to the exercise area with aerial refueling support from IL-78 tanker aircraft. The aim of the exercise is to provide operational exposure to the participating forces while training them to undertake simulated air combat operations in a controlled environment. The participating forces will get an opportunity to enhance their operational capabilities along with mutual exchange of best practices.

The large-scale exercise involving diverse fighter aircraft from across the globe will provide the participating forces, including IAF, a unique opportunity to exhchange knowledge, experience, enhance operational capabilities and interoperability. Exercising and interaction with the participating nations in a dynamic and realstic warfare environment will also contribute to strengthen international relations.

Over the last decade, IAF has regularly hosted and participated in multi-national operational exercises, wherin collaborative engagements are undertaken amongst the best air forces of the world.

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