So, you want this to better spend Indian money. How will you better defend (actually not defend but flex military muscles) India with this kind of arrangement. I am sure a platform like AWACS, 18 in nos. will be needed to support a force structure of some size, comprising of x fighters, y helicopters, z transporters, m missiles, n radars, etc. Astra and Sudershan will replace imported missiles, LCA Mk 1 & Mk 2 will replace imported aircraft but 18 AWACS - why?
Assuming a waretime scenario with Pak, we need 3 AWACS in air to cover Indo Pak border
E.g. 1 out of Amritsar, one out of Jaipur and one out of Mumbai
2 more to cover Indo China border on a defensive posture & a group flying out of A&N
These birds have 3000 km range, so with one refuel they can stay airborne for around 8 hours, hence we need 3 per location
I am assuming that we will have 3 Phalcons here, so we need 18 drdo awacs
LCA is meant to replace the older Migs, so that's 200 there already. Plus if we remove Rafale out of the picture and add 100 more. Plus 270 Su30, 60 Mig29, 50 Mirage, the later 2 expected to last be around 2040. We then have 150 or so FGFA with additional numbers replacing Mig29 and Mirage. That's more than enough air combat fighters to guard the AWACS.
I think Aakash batteries are already getting deployed.
Yes, my point is to make deploying more and more of their batteries, better versions of the missile a spending priority for IAF. A step towards having an integrated detection net, Satellites + AWACS + Ground Radar
More importantly, what this thread does not talk of are IAF helicopters. Why does the IAF have so many helicopters when the IA is already operating helicopters big time and most of IAF helicopters are flying for IA? May be start from here and cut down the IAF's helicopter fleet and hand over mostly to IA. Then look at the IAF ORBAT and start culling / adding fighter sqns based on the assessed fighter capability. Once you have done that, then may be prioritize what to buy first.
Agree ... all combat helos to IA. IAF can maintain its own transport helos.