Key Role for Private Sector, No Choice for State-owned Firms: How Tejas & Rafale are Making India ‘Atmanirbhar’

Key Role for Private Sector, No Choice for State-owned Firms: How Tejas & Rafale are Making India 'Atmanirbhar'

On January 13, 2021, PM Modi-led Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) gave the green signal for procurement of 83 Light Combat Aircraft, LCA Tejas MK IA for a deal whose cumulative value would be around Rs 48,000 crore. And though it is certainly not the first major domestic defense deal for domestic companies, given a large array of missiles are already made in India, it is certainly the biggest, wherein India’s state-owned aircraft manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) would play the role of lead systems integrator and synchronize the work of around 500-odd Indian companies, along with foreign vendors, who would work simultaneously to develop different components that would eventually be integrated in HAL facilities to bring out a potent combat aircraft and would herald the first step of India towards self-sufficiency in combat craft development.
For long, India has been a paradoxical enigma to the world, for being a country with one of the most efficient, innovative and nimble footed space agencies of the world, namely ISRO, and which has to its credit the launch of hundreds of satellites, mission to moon and mars, and yet the country had for decades struggled to develop a combat craft that can match the globally competitive ones.

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