Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Raveen » 15 Apr 2015 23:06

sohamn wrote:^^^^^ I echo you. any future fighter production should be done by private industries, as only private industries will have the incentive to absorb / reverse engineer the technology.


Not only that, unless pvt players are allowed into this field, they will never build up the capability to do anything in the future. You want automated large CF autoclaves, guess what, if Reliance/TATA/L&T/My mamaji is willing to make the investment and purchase it from a pvt company overseas so be it. If they can screwdriver something even at the same pace and money as HAL, heck, this might give them some competition and wake their unionized bata chappal babugiri a$$es up.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Altair » 16 Apr 2015 08:24

Make in India: Rafale deal may take off as a joint venture between French and Indian firm
15 Apr, 2015, 1059 hrs IST, Manu Pubby, ET Bureau

Sources familiar with the matter said there were discussions in the govt on whether to press the French firm to sign up an Indian partner and form a JV cos.
NEW DELHI: The government could ask France's Dassault Aviation to rope in an Indian partner to jointly manufacture the next batch of its Rafale fighters in the country as a condition for landing the remainder of the contract, a move it hopes will fulfil the 'Make in India' dimension that could not be met in its off-the-shelf purchase of 36 planes last week.

Sources familiar with the matter said there were initial discussions in the government on whether to press the French firm to sign up an Indian partner and form a joint venture company in which the local firm could own up to 51 per cent stake and this firm could execute the contract to supply the remaining planes.



The sources insisted that these were initial discussions and there was no certainty a final plan would have these contours.

The Indian partner, according to these discussions, would not be restricted to state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), potentially opening up the field for private players to step into the lucrative defence and aerospace business. A consortium approach, in which a group of Indian private companies come together with HAL to constitute the Indian ownership, was also being spoken of during these discussions, the sources said, adding that the entire plan was nebulous and could undergo major changes.

The matter will be taken forward after Prime Minister Narendra Modi returns from his foreign visit, the sources said. They requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

The selection of Dassault to supply 126 Rafale fighters to the Indian Air Force took place during the UPA regime in 2012, but the deal got bogged down by controversies and political indecision. After weeks of uncertainty and amid intense speculation that the BJPled administration could even cancel the contract, Modi, during a visit to France last week, pulled a surprise and signed the purchase of 36 planes off-the-shelf in a direct government-to-government deal, effectively junking the old UPA deal while retaining the vendor.

However, the official announcement last week made no mention about what happens to the remaining planes, prompting speculation in some quarters whether the government could look at fresh competitive bidding.

But sources said the thinking in South Block was that it did not make sense to buy planes from a new vendor as that would saddle the Air Force with a 'mix and match fleet' and having to operate multiple platforms, which was cumbersome and operationally inefficient. Besides a fresh competitive bidding scenario would take years, severely delaying the Indian Air Force's plans to raise its flying strength up to 42 fighter squadrons.


This will effectively rule out the possibility of fresh competitive bidding for the remaining contract, which was also indicated by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday when he said a government-to-government route was better to acquire strategic defence platforms rather than competitive, global bidding.

NUMBER COULD BE REVISITED

Sources said that while the original requirement of 126 fighters for the air force stands, this number could be revisited in the coming days after a reassessment. A higher number of planes could encourage the French side, which could otherwise have reservations on ceding the controlling stake in the Indian joint venture, to set up a production base for the jets. Such an approach could counter criticism that the new Rafale deal does not give much to India in terms of technology transfer and production capabilities. Going about the remainder of the contract though the joint venture route could give the Indian private sector a chance to partake of the government's defence spending and develop manufacturing expertise in an area that has largely been the preserve of staterun firms.

The scrapping of the old Rafale deal, along with the cancellations of similar projects, is an indication that the L1, or lowest bidder based competitive bidding process, which was initiated by the UPA regime is on the way out. Some defence experts say the lengthy process of global competition has led to the stalling of many critical military acquisitions after these got bogged down by accusations of manipulations in testing or discrepancies in commercial proposals.

Officials also say that the view within the government is that the L1 system - choosing the cheapest product after it passes the basic technical evaluation - is not ideally suited to acquiring strategic and cutting edge systems for the military.

While the L1 process was promoted by the UPA government, most military acquisition plans did not see the light of day under the process. These include two attempts to buy light helicopters for the army, a proposal to purchase aerial refuelers for the air force and plans to acquire much-needed artillery systems.

The trend to cancel or do away with projects under competitive bidding continues with the NDA government with the cancelling of the light helicopter contract last year that saw Eurocopter and Kamov making it to the final zone. Most mega projects cleared by the UPA - C-17 transporters, P-8I planes for the Navy, C-130J special operations aircraft - were government-to-government purchases.

The last large tender cleared by competitive bidding was to purchase trainer aircraft from Swiss firm Pilatus in 2012. However, that too ran into trouble as the BJP government reduced the order and gave a large chunk of it to HAL.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Altair » 16 Apr 2015 08:34

HAL is definitely being thrown under the bus here.
People are talking more about Private players owning 51% of JV. Perhaps "Dassault India" will be floated as they can keep the Tech and still manufacture in India lowering the cost. This also builds up local skill which we can use. Make in India succeeds.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby shiv » 16 Apr 2015 09:02


I think these reporters simply pick up ideas from BRF or other forums and report it and create a self feeding loop as we have our own guesswork appearing in the media. I bet this guy does not know anything that we don't know.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby alexis » 16 Apr 2015 09:12

shiv, there is supposedly 30% offset clause which could result in some kind of JV to manufacture some parts; definitely not to the scale envisaged in this report.

Good or bad, HAL is our child; infact our only child. Throwing it under the bus is....

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby venkat_r » 16 Apr 2015 09:22

Very happy to see the deal go through. Have not been a fan of the procurement process, which instead of helping, has been hurting INdia. Great job by GOI in making the decision. If desci on on the rest of the planes is also taken in time, then IAF does not have to play catch up. Very happy to see Modi moving forward with the deal.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby partha » 16 Apr 2015 09:26

Altair wrote:People are talking more about Private players owning 51% of JV. Perhaps "Dassault India" will be floated as they can keep the Tech and still manufacture in India lowering the cost. This also builds up local skill which we can use. Make in India succeeds.

Altairji,

That's one way to create a talent pool. It's a slow and painful process. I think this is where FDI might be helpful. 100% FDI doesn't mean India promises to buy weapons manufactured by foreign companies in India. They are free to make in India and export. In that process, Indians will acquire important skills and local companies will get a chance to plug themselves into the global supply chain. That will create jobs and demand for scientists and engineers which will in turn result in more students opting for courses relevant to the defense industry etc. How many students from top engg colleges have you met who say they want to join HAL and build jets? Privatization and FDI in IT sector in 90s started off with Indian engineers doing back office work for global giants but now after two decades, you see start ups springing up in Bangalore. Why can't this happen in defense sector? I know some of you will say defense is not like IT etc but what's the harm in trying?

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby shiv » 16 Apr 2015 09:46

alexis wrote:shiv, there is supposedly 30% offset clause which could result in some kind of JV to manufacture some parts; definitely not to the scale envisaged in this report.

Good or bad, HAL is our child; infact our only child. Throwing it under the bus is....

It cannot be thrown under the bus as easily and Manu Pubby might indicate. If it is a fighter program HAL is going to be involved in some way or other and that involvement will be huge. But HALs involvement in Jaguar etc is close to 100% and that will have to change.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Singha » 16 Apr 2015 09:48

ideally a pvt player might have been able to assemble and test the Hawks and Pilatus because they were assembled from CKD kits and there are no local parts.

but HAL wants to eat everything at the table ....

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby arun » 16 Apr 2015 09:56

Shishir Gupta and Rahul Singh writing in the Hindustan Times report that incumbent Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar takes potshots at his predecessor A.K. Anthony regards the Rafale deal.

That aside, on Parrikars watch more deals have been killed off than concluded. Besides the Rafale deal joining the scrapheap, if memory serves, deals terminated include the Navy's MCMV deal and the Air Forces Avro Replacement deal. Time is now ripe for Mr. Parrikar to close a deal:

Antony’s questions killed $25 billion Rafale deal: Manohar Parrikar

Shishir Gupta and Rahul Singh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Updated: Apr 16, 2015 02:01 IST

India’s multi-billion tender process to buy 126 advanced warplanes was doomed from the start because UPA defence minister AK Antony had put a “question mark” on the deal, defence minister Manohar Parrikar has said.

Speaking to Hindustan Times, Parrikar questioned the medium multirole combat aircraft (MMRCA) tendering process, picking holes in the method employed to determine French firm Dassault Aviation as the lowest bidder (L1) in the final round of the competition. According to the defence minister, the UPA government had taken hold of the “wrong end of the stick”.

India has scrapped the $25-billion deal more than three years after Dassault, which manufactures the Rafale, was declared the lowest bidder, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi opting instead to buy 36 of these jets from France in a fly-away condition under a government-to-government (G2G) contract.

“The previous defence minister had himself put a question mark (on the deal’s future) by saying go for price negotiations (with L1) but after that, review the procedure by which L1 was determined… It’s a funny statement… Concluding the deal would have been extremely difficult for us,” Parrikar told HT in his Kota House suite on the eve of a four-day visit to South Korea. Attired in a familiar blue bush shirt, Parrikar said the L1 figure in the fighter contract was determined by factoring in a questionable life-cycle cost model.

The Rafale had beaten stiff competition from the Eurofighter Typhoon to emerge the frontrunner for the contract in January 2012. Six fighters took part in the contest.

Parrikar said the request for proposal (tender) was probably not a great document as it left a lot to “interpretation and imagination.”

He said it wasn’t prudent to take the tender route to buy critical platforms such as warplanes.

“How do you compare various varieties of planes? You may take a benchmark and say these two (fighters) are above the benchmark, but again how do you compare a particular missile with another missile?” said Parrikar. He said even if multiple fighter platforms met the IAF’s requirements of combat radius, rate of climb and angle of attack, the type and number of missiles fitted on the planes could make the difference in their “effective operation”

“I believe such strategic platforms (in a non-nuclear sense) cannot be compared with each other that easily. Suppose one costs a million dollars more than the other but has a more effective missile. Technically, it may be costlier but it is better as it has longer stand-off range,” he said, suggesting the G2G route for “strategic” buys. …………………………………………


From here:

Hindustan Times

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Philip » 16 Apr 2015 10:30

This is what was alleged,that the UPA-2,with AKA and co. in charge actually sabotaged the deal on behalf of a firang power after the Raffy was chosen. The aim,to weaken our defence capability.Whether it was by design or intention,the fact remains that the 3 branches of the armed forces recd. v.shoddy attention to their immediate and future needs ,some of which were critical as in the case of spares,etc. for IN subs.

The point that the DM MP made about missile capability is exactly what the USN's CNO,Adm.Greenert has been saying all along in the debate about the USN's future strike fighter,the F-35 and legacy F-18SHs,etc....."You sometimes don't need a luxury car when a bomb truck will do". If our upgraded M-2Ks and MIG-29UGs are going to carry the same weaponry/missiles as a Rafale,then it is a legitimate Q to ask why pay double or triple the price (Rafale) when either of these two types or even an MKI could do?

We now have the glorious news that the Mountain Strike Corps meant to ward off the ominous Chinese agro on our Himalayan fronts and grandly announced by the UPA-2 ,is impractical according to the MOD/DM. It is unaffordable and has to be drastically reduced in size!
Coming on the heels of the multi-billion deal/decision to buy 36 Rafales,the IA is going to have much mucho heartburn about this. It still needs its hundreds of arty pieces,apart from other urgent eqpt.,attack helos,LUHs,etc.,etc.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby tsarkar » 16 Apr 2015 17:52

A bit of history is necessary.

It all started with Pakistan getting F-16s, 32 in the first tranche, 28 in the second tranche that was embargoed followed by additional tranche of 40 that never materialized.

We made some panic purchase of MiG-23 but realized its radar & systems et al were marginally better than MiG-21bis.

Thereafter the French offered Mirage 2000, and we grabbed it. The engine was not ready, so the initial deliveries had an interim engine that was replaced by the final engine later.

There were plans to license manufacture it in late 80’s, but it was scuttled by cheap MiG-29s followed by weak economic conditions.

Around 1995-6, IAF wanted new fighters to replace MiG-21FLs, and Mirage-2000-5 was preferred. But Russia offered its then state of the art Su-30 and with Israeli help, we could MKI it, and that trumped the Mirage-2000 for the second time.

The misinformation at that point of time to kill the Su-30 was that IAF had never operated large fighters. Hey, IAF had operated Canberras for a long time & loved them.

The concept thatIAF never had MiG-21 replacement plan is all nonsense. The Su-30 is the MiG-21 replacement.

In 1999, after Kargil, the Mirage 2000 performed superbly, IAF got 10 additional planes. They wanted 126 more but some agency (CVC?) or the government decided a competition. By that time Mirage 2000 production had ended, and we ended up having the competition where Rafale won.

The IAF loves the Mirage. Its performance in certain areas is considered better than Su-30MKI. Availability is good, though due to the heavy investment in supporting infrastructure.

The recent upgrade will make it a primary A2A platform via RDYMk 2 radars & MICA missiles. The upgrade will make it IAFs primary deterrence against Pakistani F-16 Block 52 & older upgraded F-16s. Su-30’s are moving into a multi role capability to compensate for diminishing MiG-27 & MiG-21 numbers.

Now, coming to the Rafale, if ToT is not received, including for the AESA radar that the French promised, then the deal is meaningless, because it does not add to the nation’s long term aeronautical vision. Rafale’s ToT would’ve helped the AMCA program that is also a twin engined platform.

A better option would be to order additional 90 Su-30MKI and give the entire fleet of around 360 an upgrade.

Order 180 LCA Mk1 and 180 LCA Mk2, and replace the initial 180 LCA Mk1 with Mk2. Building these 540 LCA over next 30 years @ 18 per year would give tremendous impetus to Indian Industry. It should be treated as a national infrastructure project, like roads, railways & ports.

These 30 years will also enable sufficient time for development, production-ize, deploy & operationalize the FGFA & AMCA.

Other than US, no other country is in a position to deploy mature stealth fighters in a full tempo operational scenario, in the next many decades. F-22s have never made even token deployments to conflict zones like ISIS in Iraq even though they were planned to be qualified to carry SDBs & JDAMs.

The Chinese J-20 & J-30 will require a couple of decades to mature, like the J-10, and deploy in any significant numbers. The Su-30 could be replaced by the FGFA by then and LCA Mk2 thereafter by AMCA.

Buying just 36 uber expensive but top of the line aircraft is an extremely myopic & short term solution.

G2G deal does not make it cheaper or better, it only gives a receipt to avoid corruption charges.

For example, a kali-peeli taxi (for the uninitiated, the Bombay Taxi) rate for a certain distance would be INR 100. The cabbie will extort and demand INR 20 extra. The traveler will be outraged and allege corruption.

The radio taxi service will charge INR 140 for the same distance and charge INR 60 convenience charges and the overall sum will be INR 200 with a receipt & courteous smile. That is a G2G deal for you.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby brar_w » 16 Apr 2015 18:00

F-22s have never made even token deployments to conflict zones like ISIS in Iraq even though they were planned to be qualified to carry SDBs & JDAMs.


http://www.filedropper.com/f-22syria

The are qualified for SDB's, and JDAM's, the qualification took place in 2010 and in 2011 they began to rollout the software 3.1 to the fleet that enabled 8 SDB carriage. The aircraft that deployed to Syria had 3.1 (That also includes Air to Ground SAR modes on the AN/Apg-77.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby tsarkar » 16 Apr 2015 18:23

Thank you, brar_w, for that information. I stand corrected on the deployment.

However, my larger point remains that there are no massive stealth fleets threatening India for the next couple of decades at the very least.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Cosmo_R » 16 Apr 2015 21:48

As I mentioned, Ash Carter and Frank Kendall are packing their bags....

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indi ... 949160.cms

"NEW DELHI: Foreign fighter jet makers see a multi-billion dollar opportunity in India's decision to scale back purchases of high-end aircraft from France, which may free up cash in the world's largest arms importer to buy a new fleet of mid-range planes.

....Sweden's Saab and US Lockheed Martin are set to re-pitch their Gripen and F-16 planes, eliminated in the Rafale tender, as the kind of lighter, single-engine aircraft that Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Monday the air force needed to rebuild its fleet.

"We are here and we are ready," said a source close to Saab. Saab was proposing to establish "fully-fledged production" of the Gripen in India alongside a local partner.

Lockheed Martin may also tout its F-16, one of the most widely used fighter planes in the world, as a replacement for Russian-made MiGs that are a mainstay in India's fleet, industry sources said. Lockheed Martin declined to comment."

The whole nonsense begins anew. Well at least the MMRCA thread receives a new lease on life. :)

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby chaanakya » 16 Apr 2015 21:55

Both failed planes will pitch where. They were not disqualified financially but technically. Evaluation was over only by 2012. Have they improved so drastically to actually field a plane which could pass tests within two years?

Even then F-SOlah will no have any chance being a plane associated with Pakiness.
Last edited by chaanakya on 16 Apr 2015 21:57, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby brar_w » 16 Apr 2015 21:56

Corporations will invest in foreign business and generating it as well as marketing their hardware. That is hardly news. I wouldnt be surprised if these firms ever shut their campaigns following Rafale down-select. This doesn't mean that its anything that will yield to much.

Gripen has been apparently working on a Make in India plan for over 2 years according to Stratpost interview.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby chaanakya » 16 Apr 2015 22:04

If Gripen was a contender for MMRCA will it be pitched by IAF for replacement of MIG 21 given that it failed Leh test whereas LCA passed Cold Weather test at Leh this winter.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby arshyam » 16 Apr 2015 22:06

I don't think the GoI will touch either of them, given that the IAF didn't clear them in the technical evaluation. The Rafale still has acceptability as it cleared that process, only the subsequent cost negotiations ran into trouble. If anyone else has a shot, it's the EF, but I didn't hear any murmurs when NaMo was Germany.

Also, has the IAF expressed any interest in these fighters?

Secondly, Mr. Carter will have a lot of explaining to do overview the recent gift to our neighbour. At least for that reason, we should ignore any entreaties of the US.

That said, the pronouncements of Parrikar viz. the LCA might have kindled interest, but let's see. I highly doubt the NaMo-Parrikar duo are going to let desi fighter lose out to imports, Make in India or not.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Rakesh » 16 Apr 2015 22:11

chaanakya wrote:If Gripen was a contender for MMRCA will it be pitched by IAF for replacement of MIG 21 given that it failed Leh test whereas LCA passed Cold Weather test at Leh this winter.


The powers that be will claim the cold that the gripen endured was far more than what the Tejas encountered...so the Gripen has to be given a second chance. The antipathy to desi maal will boggle one's mind. The navy OTOH is a classic example of a service that embraced make in india very early on. Project 15B is the culmination of what happens when a service supports the home industry.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby RoyG » 16 Apr 2015 22:21

I highly doubt that Parrikar lets the LCA die. It's almost ready. I think he is working behind the scenes to cut out HAL slowly from the R&D and production process.

Gripens and F-solahs will not be adding to our numbers.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby NRao » 16 Apr 2015 22:35

Two items of interest:

1) Looks like the deal that Modi made was to get India out of the MMRCA deal. In the process both sides have agreed to scratch each other's backs

2)

As I mentioned, Ash Carter and Frank Kendall are packing their bags....


Dunno. IAF stuff is huge in terms of $$$$ - icing at best. BUT it is IN that really counts for "strategy" and the one that could be really influenced - cake.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby putnanja » 16 Apr 2015 22:36

Cross-posting ...

A very good interview by Defence minister in HT. Not sure if it was posted earlier:

IAF consulted on direct buy of Rafales: Parrikar

From an arms race in the Indian Ocean and the challenges of raising a mountain strike corps to the hurdles in scaling up border infrastructure and how the UPA regime ignored the military's needs, defence minister Manohar Parrikar opens up to HT in an exclusive interview.

Excerpts:

Q. Was the Indian Air Force on board when the government took the decision to buy 36 Rafale fighters under the government-to-government (G2G) route from France?

A. I consulted the Air Force to the extent it was required. They have no role in decision-making as ultimately it’s the Prime Minister’s call. I did discuss possibilities with the prime minister and he took a very bold decision which was required. If we had missed this opportunity, the entire matter would have gone into a spin and we might have had to re-start the whole procedure this year. And in another five years our requirements might have changed. Rafale induction could begin in about 18 months.


Q. You said the fighter acquisition process will be G2G now. Will India buy more Rafales or could it source fighters from other countries too?

A. I will say both options are open to us depending on reassessment of our requirements (after scrapping the tender for 126 aircraft). I will not spell out MMRCA (Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft) role but it will be very effective in certain areas. Two people travel on a scooter, 4 in a car and 20 in a bus. But 2 people can also travel in a bus but that would be wasting resources. So, we will not deploy this aircraft where it is not required. I can tell you our light combat aircraft (LCA) is also a very capable aircraft and can replace MiG-21s more than adequately. It cannot be compared with the Rafale as the latter is a heavier fighter with two engines.

Q. So India will buy more Rafales after re-assessing requirements? Where does the LCA fit in the picture?

A. I feel that some more Rafale jets may be required but need to figure out how we can acquire them. But more importantly, we need large number of aircraft to replace MiG variants over the next 8-10 years, which is their extended life. So either we go in for large-scale manufacturing of the LCA or combine some other requirements and go for a medium-weight fighter under the Make in India plan.

Some of it can be replaced by even proper stockpiling of missiles. Nowadays, one can attack some targets by proper use of missiles.

Q. Will the remaining Rafales come under Make in India programme and will Dassault Aviation set up a unit here?

A. That decision will be taken after both India and France hold talks. It will also depend on what our financial outlay is. We operate various MiG variants, Mirage 2000s, Jaguars, Sukhoi-30s and we have the LCA now. All these warplanes have different capabilities and cannot be compared. Ultimately, we may also require certain number of Rafales but how many will hinge on the cost factor. Why just 126? I would want the IAF to have 500 planes, but the question is how much I can afford. We will have to do an analysis of minimum requirement and then take a decision.

Q. The 10 years of UPA is often referred to as the lost decade for the military with several key projects getting delayed or derailed. How do you intend to reverse the damage and speed up acquisitions?

A. My focus is on projects that are stuck at different stages. I have managed to speed up these projects by 25%. There are 339 such cases that need to be dealt with. The ministry has managed to bring 58 of these to final stages of completion. Nearly 100 projects may not be required now due to long delays or changed requirements and we are looking at dropping them or putting them on the back burner. The thrust is on accelerating critical projects.

Q. What stopped the previous regime from taking quick decisions: bureaucratic inertia or lack of leadership?

A. I always say bureaucracy is colourless like water. It takes the colour of the government so you cannot totally blame them (bureaucrats). Part of the blame surely lies with them. But, it is the duty of the government or the minister to ensure proper follow-up action to crucial projects. I do not know what the previous government was doing but as far as I am concerned, review meetings are held in South Block on a daily basis.

Q. Pakistan is on course to buy 8 diesel-electric submarines from China in what would be one of Beijing's biggest exports. How do you think it will change the dynamics in the Indian Ocean region?

A. Of course, a submarine in itself is a very powerful platform in the ocean. It may, however, not directly pose a threat to India. But it does become a weakness in your armour of controlling the ocean. We will have to match it. I do not see it as a big problem because we will have enough submarines by the time Pakistan gets these 8. By the time they get the deliveries, we can manufacture 15-20 submarines.

Q. You have said the UPA regime cleared the mountain strike corps project in the eastern sector without factoring in availability of funds? What outlay are you planning to set aside for it?

A. The previous government had estimated it will cost Rs 88,000 crore and will have 70,000 soldiers. I have frozen the cost at Rs 38,000 crore over next eight years. It will consist of 35,000 men. The CCS had cleared the original proposal, but where is the money? Rs 88,000 crore is the army's revenue budget. The CCS kept clearing projects worth Rs 50,000 crore to Rs 1,00,000 crore but where is the actual money? :rotfl: So you have to be selective. I have cleared a Rs 48,000-crore project for seven stealth frigates (P-17A), but I have factored in when the money will be required and at what stage.

Q. Are you satisfied with infrastructure in forward areas and the role of the Border Roads Organisation?

A. Much more needs to be done. Environmental clearances have come in 64 cases. But I will be able to take the issue head on only when we are in a position to deliver in terms of roads. BRO is now in the process of outsourcing. Government machinery, the BRO in particular, has never developed the technique of outsourcing. They are very poor outsourcers. They do not have conceptual clarity on outsourcing. We are in touch with the Confederation of Indian Industry and may appoint consultants to push it.

Q. Can you elaborate on proposed changes in the new defence procurement policy?

A. Different issues are being tackled separately and we are close to coming close to a conclusion. I think 8 or 9 main issues (including blacklisting and allowing agents) have been discussed extensively and decision-making is in an advanced stage. I am forming a committee that will go through all this material and do a final round of interaction (with stakeholders). It will then write a Defence Procurement Procedure which will be published after the ministry vets it.

Q. The Prime Minister has talked about skills as part of defence offsets but your ministry says skills cannot be a part of offsets.

A. It can be. They are going by what is written there. But if we change that, the same people will say it is possible. Currently, there is a ban on services in offsets as someone used services to give kickbacks. I intend to take it up at the next meeting of the defence acquisition council and lift the ban on services.

Q. What are your expectations from your visit to South Korea (April 15-19)?

A. The Prime Minister will be visiting Korea in May. The idea is to discuss some issues so that some agreements can be finalised and signed during the Prime Minister's visit. The Koreans excel in areas such as shipbuilding, electronics and metallurgy. They have also shown interest in the Make in India programme.

Q. The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has been without a chief for more than 2 months? What about appointing chief of defence staff?

A. The selection process for the new DRDO chief is on and will happen soon. DRDO will play a key role in boosting the Make in India programme. We will encourage it to tie up with the local industry in the development phase. As for creation of the post of chief of defence staff or permanent chairman of the chiefs of staff committee, I will take up that issue after two months as I already have my hands full with other issues. We do intend to create that post but if I take up everything together I will not be able to do anything.

Q. Coming back to the Rafale deal, you said your predecessor had himself put a question mark on it.

A. The previous defence minister had written that after the price negotiation is done, L1 should be verified again. But it did not come to that stage as it got stuck up because of interpretation of whether to take French man-hours into consideration for building the plane or Indian man-hours, which is 2.7 times the French number. I have not gone into too much detail on that, but my officers have expressed reservations about this 2.7-hour formula for local manufacturing.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Austin » 16 Apr 2015 22:43


Indian Rethink Is Leading To a Smaller Rafale Deal


http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/ ... afale-deal

Parrikar said that the Rafale acquisition should have been a “government-to-government” deal from the outset. He added that a new defense procurement policy would be announced soon, and would be less complicated than the current policy, with its “Make in India” provisions. Mehta said the new Rafale deal “has given the IAF much-needed breathing space while keeping other options open. It is likely to free up funds that can partly be used for scaling up production of the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft [LCA] and the faster induction of the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft [FGFA] in collaboration with Russia.” AIN has learned that an additional 30 Sukhoi Su-30MKIs will be ordered in the meanwhile.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Vivek K » 16 Apr 2015 23:28

26 Rafale, 66 Mig 29, 50 Mirages, 40 LCA - wow, the circus is in town. Why not add 30 F16, 30 Gripen, 30 F18 and 30 Mig 35?

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby GeorgeWelch » 17 Apr 2015 01:57

Vivek K wrote:Why not add 30 F16, 30 Gripen, 30 F18 and 30 Mig 35?


Because they're getting the F-35 instead

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Apr 2015 03:34

Vivek K wrote:26 Rafale, 66 Mig 29, 50 Mirages, 40 LCA - wow, the circus is in town. Why not add 30 F16, 30 Gripen, 30 F18 and 30 Mig 35?


Oh but circuses are not what they used to be Saar (unless of course it is the cirque du soleil :) )

Compare this circa 2025 fleet with the elaborate circus the IAF managed previously, and I see a streamlined outfit.

IAF 2025
36 Rafale, 66 MiG-29, 50 Mirage 2000, 100 LCA, 20 Pakfa, 100 Jaguar, 270 Su-30MKI

VS
IAF 1999
10 MiG-25, 66 MiG-29, 50 Mirage-2000, 200 MiG-21, 150 MiG-27, 150 Jaguar, 40 MiG-23, 30 Su-30K, 10 Canberra

And, it will only get better. By 2035, the IAF is likely to have only about 5 types (Pakfa, MKI, Rafale, LCA, AMCA). Not too shabby.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Shaashtanga » 17 Apr 2015 03:45

Not sure if this has already been posted here but here are Major General Bakshi's views on Rafale Deal -


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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Cosmo_R » 17 Apr 2015 05:02

From Parrikar's words above along with snips from media, the situation appears to be something like this IMHO:

1. The order of 36 Rafales was to zero out the liabilities/delays of canceling the MMRCA contract. The GoI could not afford the price and Dassault could not keep to the terms of the tender (guaranteeing HAL's work). The first to blink was going to have to cough up. The search for a win/win was to order the 36 and kick the can down the road.

2. The French were paid off with the 36, the IAF with the same and HAL with option to get a piece of the 108. The Airbus $2bn investment was the QPQ offset for the the 36.

3. Technically speaking, the MMRCA is dead if both parties agreed to 1 and 2 above. Unfortunately as one might expect in the great Indian arms bazaar, the open ended nature (to be decided) of what happens to the 108 has has juiced up all the wannabees. LM is going to make a full court press on the JSF for the 108 and it suits the US well since if chosen, it would kill the PAK/FA and hurt Russia.

4. Not so much in the media is that Modi did it to prove he is the decider who can cut the Gordian knot (Google Claude Arpi's comment about 'Genie') with important implications for moving India beyond the usual paralysis about FDI/Land Acquisition/Labor rules etc. This was important going into the Hannover Fair w/Merkel.

5. Looking ahead (speculating), Case 1: 108 more Rafales (make in India w/o HAL) Case 2 : 54 JSF (in addition to original 36 Rafales)

6. In both case + IN orders + huge order of LCA MK2

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby shiv » 17 Apr 2015 05:55

putnanja wrote:Q. So India will buy more Rafales after re-assessing requirements? Where does the LCA fit in the picture?

A. I feel that some more Rafale jets may be required but need to figure out how we can acquire them. But more importantly, we need large number of aircraft to replace MiG variants over the next 8-10 years, which is their extended life. So either we go in for large-scale manufacturing of the LCA or combine some other requirements and go for a medium-weight fighter under the Make in India plan.

Some of it can be replaced by even proper stockpiling of missiles. Nowadays, one can attack some targets by proper use of missiles.
a decision.

hmmmmmmmm..

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Guddu » 17 Apr 2015 07:08

I for one am happy the govt took a decision. The only decision that saint antony took was to not take a decision.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Rakesh » 17 Apr 2015 08:00

Saint Anthony's only contribution to the MoD was guarding the furniture.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby GeorgeWelch » 17 Apr 2015 08:33

shiv wrote:
putnanja wrote:Q. So India will buy more Rafales after re-assessing requirements? Where does the LCA fit in the picture?

A. I feel that some more Rafale jets may be required but need to figure out how we can acquire them. But more importantly, we need large number of aircraft to replace MiG variants over the next 8-10 years, which is their extended life. So either we go in for large-scale manufacturing of the LCA or combine some other requirements and go for a medium-weight fighter under the Make in India plan.


If you need large number of fighters fast, the SH is still the best decision. Nothing else combines the affordability with the industrial capability to get it done. The Rafale is currently at 11/year and it will take years to double that rate and just sold 2 years worth of production to Egypt. Not to mention, 100+ of them just isn't affordable. The Tejas, well HAL hasn't even built 20 total and of course it isn't even operational yet.

Both are utterly incapable of delivering the quantities needed in the timeframe required.

The SH is currently being produced at 36/year.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Singha » 17 Apr 2015 08:42

the SH was the weakest of the lot at high alt ops iirc. it will be hard for it to overcome that tag.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby nikhil_p » 17 Apr 2015 08:54

The hornet is not going to make it. Two reasons why - one - it failed critical hot and high tests, 2 - it doesn't bring much to the table compared to other contenders. The EF could very well be the dark horse in this race. It was after all L2 and brings to the table Germany, England and a couple of other European countries which could be strategically important. But IMHO the Gripen makes more sense overall

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby vishvak » 17 Apr 2015 09:27

Gripen has same engine as LCA and probably will be affected by sanctions whenever US Govt/Senate wishes so. Better to have more of LCA by awarding manufacturing 32/year to competing pvt/public enterprises, and if HAL wants to be then HAL could be part of some consultant/integrator unit, thereby not having to lose any manpower to pvt industries and at the same time increasing talent pool without poaching.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby pankajs » 17 Apr 2015 09:40

WRT US fighters > US still insists that we sign on to all the four lettered agreements for any substantial transfer of tech. India does not want to sign on.

We can talk all we want and test them all we want in Leh, etc BUT the main hurdle still remains.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby abhik » 17 Apr 2015 09:44

Q. Was the Indian Air Force on board when the government took the decision to buy 36 Rafale fighters under the government-to-government (G2G) route from France?

A. I consulted the Air Force to the extent it was required. They have no role in decision-making as ultimately it’s the Prime Minister’s call.
^^^
I don't like the sound of this. "Consulted to the extent required", "ultimately it’s the Prime Minister’s call"? Sounds like a unilateral decision by the PM. I'm wondering if the IAF is now kicking itself for insisting on only Rafale.

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby Philip » 17 Apr 2015 09:58

Karnad's figures need to be rechecked.If they are accurate then he has a very valid point.

http://bharatkarnad.com/
Impatience Seals Worst Possible Defence Deal
Bharat Karnad
Posted on April 17, 2015

by Bharat Karnad
With the price negotiations meandering into the fourth year, an impatient Narendra Modi intervened, circumventing the elaborate Request for Proposal (RFP) system of competitive bidding under which the medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) deal was initiated. The prime minister decided to purchase the Rafales “off the shelf” without transfer of technology at the government-to-government (G2G) level.

This was portrayed as Modi’s “out of the box” solution for a problem that didn’t really exist. Plainly, he mistook the hard, extended, bargaining between the two sides as evidence of red tape, and cutting it as his unique achievement. But impatience is a liability in international relations and can cost the country plenty.

Rather than pressuring French president Francois Hollande and the French aviation major, Dassault, which is in dire straits and was in no position to resist sustained Indian pressure to deliver the Rafale and the technologies involved in toto to India, Modi eased off, promising a munificent $5billion-$8 billion for 36 Rafales off the shelf minus any reference to the L1 (lowest cost) MMRCA tender offer, possibly a buy of another 30 of them, and no onerous technology transfer obligation.

It is a turn that must have astonished Hollande and Dassault with its exceptional generosity, surpassing in its muddle-headed excess Narasimha Rao’s handout of Rs 6,000 crore in 1996 to Russia to prevent the closure of the Sukhoi design bureau and production plant in Irkutsk, in return for nothing, not even joint share of the intellectual property rights for the Su-30MKI technologies subsequently produced there, which could have kick-started the Indian aerospace sector. Then again, India is a phenomenally rich country, don’t you know?—the proverbial white knight rescuing the Russian aviation industry one day, French aerospace companies the next.

But let’s try and see if sense can be made of Modi’s Rafale deal. Much has been said about the G2G channel as a means of securing low prices. The record of acquisitions from the United States in the direct sales mode, however, shows no marked drop-off in the price for the C-17s and C-130J airlifters and the P-8I maritime reconnaissance planes. But in terms of maintenance, almost all the 20-odd ANTPQ-36/37 artillery fire-spotting radar units bought by the army from the Pentagon, for instance, are offline due to the paucity of spares. Supplier states in this situation routinely manipulate the spares supply to configure politico-military outcomes they desire. No saying what France will do with respect to the entire fleet of IAF Rafales in the years to come. Usually, the practice also is to sell the platform cheap but rake in extortionist profit selling onboard weapons and spares. In any case, it is unlikely the price of a fully loaded Rafale will be less than $200 million each or $7.2 billion for 36 Rafales, $13 billion for 66 of these aircraft, and $25.2 billion for 126 planes.

Then again, French fighter planes have proved inordinately expensive to maintain. How expensive? According to a recent report by the Comptroller and Accountant General, in 2012-2013, for example, the total cost of upkeep of all 51 Mirage 2000 aircraft in the IAF inventory was Rs 486.85 crore compared to Rs 877.84 crore for 170 Su-30MKIs—meaning, the annual unit cost of maintaining a Mirage was Rs 9.5 crore versus Rs 5.2 crore for the more capable Su-30MKI. Now ponder over this: The cost of upkeep of a Rafale is authoritatively estimated at twice the cost of the Mirage and, hence, four times that of Su-30!

The “Super Sukhoi” avatar of the air dominance-capable Su-30 entering IAF is equipped with the latest AESA (active electronically scanned array) radar permitting the switching between air-to-air and air-to-ground roles in flight, and which radar will be retrofitted on the older versions of this plane in service. In the event, in what combat profile exactly is the Rafale superior?

The defence minister Manohar Parrikar was partial to the Su-30 option, having publicly stated that it was more affordable—its procurement price half that of a Rafale, and that owing to improved spares supply condition, its serviceability rate would rise to 75 per cent by year-end, exceeding that of the Mirage, incidentally. Even so, the loyal Parrikar praised Modi’s Rafale initiative as providing “minimum oxygen” for the IAF without letting on that it will maximally oxygenate French interests and industry!

While Modi talked of a low G2G price for the Rafale, he said nothing about its servicing bill. According to a former Vice Chief of the Air Staff, the total life-cycle costs (LCC) for a fleet of 126 Rafales calculated by Air Headquarters is over $40 billion. How will the LCC be downscaled if only 36 or 66 Rafales are eventually bought? If the real acquisition price of the ordnance-loaded Rafales is added to the LCC the total outgo will be upwards of $50billion-$55 billion, a figure this analyst had mentioned many moons ago.

Indeed, the odds actually are that India will end up buying the entire MMRCA requirement from France. Why? With 36 aircraft slotted in the direct sales category, it is already cost-prohibitive for any Indian private sector company to invest in a production line valued at $5billion-$6 billion to produce the remaining 60 or even 90 aircraft. In other words, by pledging to buy enhanced numbers of Rafales from Dassault the Narendra Modi government will be constrained by economic logic to buy the rest from this source as well, a denouement the IAF had always desired. Why else was the IAF Chief Arup Raha so desperate to get the PM to commit to buying significant numbers of this aircraft outright on the pretext of “critical” need when the Rafales will come in only by 2018 at the earliest but importing Su-30s from Russia would have beefed up the force by this year-end?

Previous prime ministers have been victimised by bad advice, and paid the political price, for instance, Rajiv Gandhi with regard to the Bofors gun. Modi will have to carry the can for this Rafale transaction—a boondoggle in the making. With the opposition parties and Dr Subramaniam Swamy waking up to its potential to politically hamstring the BJP government and mar Modi’s prospects, anything can happen.

[Published in the New Indian Express, April 17, 2015, at http://www.newindianexpress.com/columns ... 767483.ece

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Re: Rafale & MMRCA News and Discussions-9 August, 2014

Postby pankajs » 17 Apr 2015 10:06

All foreign purchases will have some or the other issue i.e Expensive, spares, maintenance, 4 lettered agreements, sanctions, etc.

I have already proposed the cheapest solution. A White flag at Lal Quila and an invitation to the Bakis or the Cheenis to take over. We can probably manage within a couple of thousand rupee provided we again stick to local material and darzi.

Why does a peace loving country, the land of gandy and buddha need Force and that too AIR force hanji?


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