Philip wrote:Why on earth then would a patriotic govt. like the NDA, not I call for another MRCA tender?
Because Govts do not operate military platforms, the services do. There have been numerous attempts - some successful - at increasing the % of indigenous content/desi platforms, but largely the Govt has to follow what the services tell them when it comes to military platforms. Defence Minister Sitharaman has gone on official record stating that she encourage indigenization only to a certain point and she cannot arm twist the services to buy desi maal over phoren maal. I have the article, if you want to see it.
No one can expect Prime Minister Modi (or his predecessors) or Defence Minister Sitharaman (or her predecessors) to know about AESA radars or tank warfare or the value of carrier battle groups. That is not their job and they rely on senior military leadership to advise them on such matters.
To answer your specific question about calling for another MRCA tender, the following set of circumstances has led to the re-issuing of the tender;
- Tejas Mk1 production not ramping in large enough numbers to meet the shortfall, despite the fact that MRCA will do squat to address the shortfall.
- MoD languishing on key developmental projects - Kaveri engine, Uttam radar, etc. But MoD got money to fund MRCA contest
- No accountability at DRDO, GTRE and other organizations which leads to zero faith in them by the services.
- Adhoc planning (MRCA contest) in which the services, the babus and even the Govt are all to blame.
Fix Tejas production first and then cancel MRCA tender. All three - IAF, Babu and Govt - have to be in sync with this. but they are not and thus the reason for the mess.