The Indian government last year gave a $6 billion contract to state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd for 83 of the locally produced Tejas jets for delivery starting around 2023 – four decades after it was first approved in 1983.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, keen to reduce India’s reliance on foreign defence equipment, has also been making diplomatic efforts to export the jets. The Tejas has been beset by design and other challenges, and was once rejected by the
The defence ministry told Parliament that Hindustan Aeronautics in October last year responded to a request for proposal from the Royal Malaysian Air Force for 18 jets, offering to sell the two-seater variant of Tejas.
“Other countries which have evinced interest in the LCA aircraft are: Argentina, Australia, Egypt, USA, Indonesia, and Philippines,” India’s junior defence minister,
He said the country was also working on manufacturing a stealth fighter jet, but declined to given a timeline citing national security concerns.
Britain said in April it would support India's goal of building its own fighter jets. India currently has a mix of Russian, British and French fighter jets.
IAF’s four existing MiG-21 squadrons to be grounded by 2025, starting this September The four existing squadrons of the old single-engine MiG-21s, inducted by the IAF in 1963 and plagued by an alarmingly high crash rate in later years, will finally be retired by 2025. The phasing out has been repeatedly deferred due to the depleting number of IAF fighter squadrons and the huge
India is looking to ground all its Soviet-era Russian fighter jets, the MiG-21, by 2025, following a number of fatal crashes, TOI reported last month.
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