India Approved the Acquisition of Barak Missiles
After a long investigation of seven years for the alleged guilt of bribery,
the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation ruled Israeli companies are free
of guilt. This paved the way for the acquisition of Israeli Barak missiles
Ami Rojkes Dombe 14/1/2014
India Approved the Acquisitionof Barak Missiles The Indian Ministery of
Defence, headed by A. K. Antony, approved last month the acquisition of 262
Israeli Barak-I missiles, by Rafael and IAI, a deal estimated at $143
million, according to a report on defense-aerospace.
The Defence Acquisitions Council (DAC) also gave the green light for two
other delayed naval projects. One of them is for the acquisition of 16
anti-submarine warfare (ASW) warships capable of operating in “shallow
waters”, worth $2 billion. The second project is the acquisition of two
diving support vessels meant for rescuing sailors from disabled submarines.
Furthermore, the council approved the purchase of 41 Dhruv advanced
helicopters, manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), worth $49
“While a global tender will now be floated for the diving support vessels or
DSRVs (deep-submergence rescue vessels), the ASW boats will be built in
India with some foreign collaboration for torpedoes etc. The ASW boats, with
a displacement below 1,000 tonne, are crucial to track and kill enemy
submarines near our coast or ports,” said a source. These two projects are
hanging in the air for a long time. The offer for the two underwater
vehicles is stuck for over 15 years.
But the green light for the acquisition of the Barak-I missiles will now
require the final nod from the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS). The Navy
has for long been screaming about its fast-depleting stock of missiles to
arm the Israeli Barak-I anti-missile defense (AMD) systems fitted on 14
frontline warships, such as the aircraft carrier INS Viraat and the latest
Shivalik-class stealth frigates.
However, the acquisition was halted due to an investigation of an alleged
bribery case in which foreign companies were involved, including IAI and
Rafael. It ended in full acquittal of Israeli companies due to lack of
evidence, the report said. During the seven-year period, the Indian MOD has
consistently refused to put to blacklist the Israeli companies, claiming
that such a move would harm the national security of India.
Israel is the second largest weapon supplier to India, with sales worth
around $1 billion a year. Of the several projects currently underway, IAI
and DRDO are jointly developing a long-range surface-to-air missile (LR-SAM)
system to arm Indian warships, worth $424 million, and a medium-range SAM
system for IAF at the cost of $1.6 billion.
Both these systems, with an interception range of 70 km each, were to be
ready long ago but have repeatedly missed deadlines. The naval LR-SAM
project, approved in December 2005, is now slated for completion by December
2015. The MR-SAM project, sanctioned in February 2009, in turn, has a
“probable date of completion” by August 2016, sources told the website.
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