28 Feb '18, 3am
Govt shelves $10-b single-engine fighter jet deal, to push for Tejas
After much dithering the government has finally taken a decision to shelve the $10-billion project on procuring only single-engine fighter from foreign vendors even as it plans to push for Tejas Light Combat Aircraft Mark-2 for the Indian Air Force, which is in dire need of modern fighter jets. In 2016, the plan to procure imported single-engine warplane got a major push when the Air Force had sent letters to foreign vendors seeking their interest in building a single-engine fighter aircraft in India in collaboration with an Indian player. Finally, the choices narrowed down to US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin’s F-16 Block 70 and Swedish Gripen E manufactured by SAAB. Both these companies also came out with exhaustive plans under ‘Make in India’ with the promise to set up production units here and eventually transforming India into a global export hub. While Lockheed Mart...