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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 27 February 2024 9.47 AM IST

97 Tejas jets, 156 Prachand copters; Centre clears major defence deal

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NEW DELHI: The central government has cleared the proposal for acquiring 97 self-made Tejas Mark-1A Light Combat Aircraft and 156 Prachand attack helicopters to strengthen the armed forces. The 2.23 lakh crore deal also includes procurement of anti-ship missiles and towed artillery.

Tejas aircraft and Prachand copters are manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics. While Tejas will be procured for the Air Force and Prachanda is for both the Air Force and the Army. The upgrade plan of 84 Su-30MKI fighters was also cleared at a meeting of DAC held today.

The first version of the Tejas LCA aircraft was inducted into the IAF in 2016. Currently, two squadrons of IAF are fully operational with LCA Tejas. Tejas will be the largest fleet of fighter aircraft to be operated by the Indian Air Force in the coming years.

An order worth Rs 36,468 crore for delivery of 83 LCA Mk 1A aircraft has been placed with HAL and delivery is scheduled to begin by February 2024, a recent Ministry of Defence statement said.

Last week, PM Modi carried out a sortie in Tejas from the Aircraft Systems Testing Establishment, Bengaluru. During the 30-minute sortie, the capabilities of the fighter aircraft Tejas were demonstrated to the PM.

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