India is set to join the United States of America and Russia in providing advanced missile shield to its important cities like New Delhi and Mumbai. Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), headed by Defence Minister Nirmarla Sitaraman, has approved the plan to procure the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System-II (NASAMS) through a government-to government deal with US. The entire deal would be close to $ 1billion. Nasams-II is manufactured by Kongsberg and Raytheon.
The new missile system will replace aging Russian Pechora air defense systems. NASAMS-II will be armed with 3-D sentinel radar and short and medium-range missile launchers. It can also track and shoots down multiple airborne threats such as cruise missile, drones and fighter jets. This missile
Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is also developing two-tier ballistic missile defence (BMD) shield. The missile system of DRDO will be capable of tracking and destroying nuclear missiles both inside and outside the earth’s atmosphere. Once developed the BMD shield will be deployed to protect cities like New Delhi and Mumbai, whereas NASMAS-II will be used to intercept cruise missiles and aircraft. India is likely to issue letter of request to the US by the end of this year.
NASAMS II – a highly adaptable mid-range air defense system. Its battery consists of 12 missile launchers carrying six missiles each. The missile system employs the AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) as the primary weapon. The RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile can also be fired by the NASAMS-II.
India has finally concluded price negotiations with Russia for a nearly Rs 40,000 crore deal to procure S-400 Triumf air defence missile systems for the Indian Air Force. Both India and Russia now have to find a way to evade the United States’ Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). It is a law formulated by the US to punish countries and entities involved in defence transactions with Russia.
A Russian official confirmed that the final price negotiations had been concluded, reported PTI. Both the nations are likely to announce the deal before an October’s annual summit between Prime Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Both the leaders met in Sochi last week and supposedly the both might have discussed the deal.
The US had announced sanctions against Russia for its alleged involvement in meddling in the US presidential elections. CAATSA came into effect in January. Many US lawmakers and experts are of the opinion that India should be exempted from CAATSA. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has urged the Congress to provide necessary waiver to exempt India from the law. Similarly, US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis last month appealed to the Congress to urgently provide India the national security waiver.
India wants to procure the long-range missile systems to tighten its air defence mechanism, particularly along the nearly 4,000-km-long Sino-India border. In 2016 an agreement was signed between India and Russia on ‘Triumf’ interceptor based missile system. S-400 is an advanced version of S-300. The missile system can destroy incoming enemy fighter jets, missiles and even drones up to the range of 400 km. This missile system is manufactured by Almaz-Antey and is serving Russian Military since 2007.
India will be supplying four Mi-35 attack helicopters to Afghanistan to fight against the Pakistan-backed Taliban. India has decided to help the war-torn nation to carry out its operations against Taliban by enhancing its military capabilities, reported The Statesman, citing Afghan diplomatic sources. India is expected to directly purchase these Russian-made helicopters from Belarus. It would have taken a long time to procure the choppers if it were to place an order for their supplies.
Afghanistan, Belarus and India inked a trilateral pact for the refurbished Mi-24 helicopters in March, Afghan ambassador Shaida Abdali said in an interview to Hindustan Times. India had supplied four Mi-35 attack helicopters to Afghanistan in 2015-16 for strengthening the Afghan forces.
According to sources, the decision to supply four more four more helicopters to Afghanistan was taken after the US and other key Western powers pushed India to play a pro-active role in bringing stability in Afghanistan. Around 1,000 Afghan soldiers are already getting trained in Indian Defence institutions.
Afghanistan forces are mostly using Russian weapons. As Indian is also using Russian weapons, so United States has requested India to assist Afghanistan Air Force in combating terrorism. India and Afghanistan also propose to hold the next meeting of the strategic council between them in Kabul to consider ways to enhance the fighting ability of the Afghan forces, reported The Statesman. The last meeting was held in New Delhi last year. The US also has started implementing its four-year defence plan in Afghanistan as a result of this the strength of the Afghan Air Force (AAF) will be increased three-fold.
The air corridor established last year between India and Afghanistan to avoid the problems being created by Pakistan for trade between has helped the two nations in increasing trade and commercial links, whereas trade between Afghanistan and Pakistan has decreased considerably.