Defence Ministry Tenders Rs 65,000 Crore Deal to HAL for 97 LCA Mark 1A Fighter Jets

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New Delhi: In a significant move towards bolstering indigenous military capabilities, the Defence Ministry has issued a tender to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for the acquisition of 97 LCA Mark 1A fighter jets, valued at over Rs 65,000 crore. This procurement marks the largest order for domestically manufactured military hardware in Indian history.

The Defence Ministry has given HAL a three-month window to respond to the tender, aiming to replace the Indian Air Force’s aging fleet of MiG-21s, MiG-23s, and MiG-27s. Government officials highlight the program’s dual benefit of promoting indigenous production and stimulating business for small and medium enterprises engaged in defense manufacturing nationwide.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s emphasis on revitalizing HAL has led to the company securing orders for various indigenous fighter aircraft and helicopters, including their engines. Modi’s recent sortie in the trainer variant of the indigenous fighter underscores his support for domestic defense capabilities.

The decision to acquire 97 additional LCA Mark 1A fighter jets was announced by Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari during a visit to Spain, following a comprehensive review of the indigenous fighter jet program. The forthcoming batch of LCA Mark 1A aircraft, with advanced avionics and radars, will further enhance India’s aerial capabilities.

With over 65% indigenous content, the LCA Mark 1A program epitomizes India’s self-reliance and commitment to Atmanirbhar Bharat and Make in India initiatives. HAL is poised to secure additional contracts for over 200 LCA Mark 2s and a similar number of fifth-generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft, further solidifying India’s aerospace self-sufficiency.

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