The government on Saturday cleared defence procurement proposals worth over Rs 21,000 crore and also okayed a project for the production of transport aircraft, which is open only to Indian private sector companies.
Among the major proposals to receive approval is a Rs 9,000 crore tender to provide five fleet support ships for the Navy, for which the request for proposal (RFP) would be issued to all public and private sector shipyards, Defence Ministry officials said.
Chairing his first meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), Defence Minister Arun Jaitley said, “There are many proposals in the pipeline for the defence forces and, today, we have tried to expedite quite a few of them.”
Thus, a proposal for supply of 32 HAL-built Advanced Light Helicopter, ‘Dhruv’, to the Coast Guard and the Navy at a cost of Rs 7,000 crore was also okayed, officials said.
Under the proposal, HAL will supply 16 helicopters each to the Coast Guard and the Navy and also provide maintenance for the machines to ensure the “highest level of operational maintenance and efficiency”.
DAC also cleared an IAF proposal for issuance of a tender for construction of 56 transport aircraft by private industry players to replace the force’s fleet of Avro aircraft, they said.
As per the proposal, private Indian defence companies such as Tata and Mahindra would be issued tender and they would build the aircraft in partnership with foreign firms.
The meeting also cleared the procurement of five fast patrol vessels (FPV) and offshore patrol vessels (OPV) each for the Coast Guard at the cost of Rs 2,360 crore.
The FPVs and OPVs would be built by the state-owned GRSE and Goa Shipyards Ltd, respectively, officials said.
A proposal to procure search and rescue (SAR) equipment for the three services at a cost of Rs 900 crore, too, received the green light.