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Friday, December 17, 2010

Made in India: IAF rings the BEL for 6 more Akash Sqdns worth $1.1b


By Anantha Krishnan M. AVIATION WEEK |
Bangalore  India | December 16, 2010 |

The Indian Air Force (IAF) has placed orders for six more squadrons of Akash Missile Systems (AMS) worth Rs 5,000 crore ($1.1 billion). Bengaluru-based Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL) will be the principal integrator for the systems. BEL is currently executing the first order for two AMS squadrons (48 missiles) for the IAF worth Rs 1,221 crore ($269.5 million).
The Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) confirmed to Aviation Week Dec. 16 that the additional orders have come as a huge boost to India’s indigenous military program. “The fact that the user [IAF] has placed additional orders shows the growing confidence they have in homegrown products,” a senior DRDO official says. “IAF will benefit immensely from these orders as they can get whatever modifications to AMS done within no time. Time, cost overruns and delay in getting spares won’t be major issues anymore.”

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