Big Boost For Armed Forces As Govt Allocates $130 Billion For Modernisation Of Army, Navy, Air Force
In order to further strengthen the Army, Navy and the Air Force, the Indian government has decided to infuse a whooping amount of $130 billion in the coming 5-7 years as a military modernisation initiative.
According to a report by news agency PTI, the estimated sum of money will be used by the government in procuring a range of critical weapons, missiles, fighter jets, submarines, and warships in the next few years.
As off now, government's immediate priority is to fast-track infantry modernisation, including procuring 2,600 infantry combat vehicles and 1,700 future ready combat vehicles for the Indian Army. Another key priority is to procure 110 multi-role fighter aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF).
Even the armed forces have been consistently pushing for adequate allocation of funds so that they are well prepared to deal with the possibility of a 'two-front' war on both northern and western borders, the report added.
The report further quoted sources saying that government is aware of China significantly ramping up its air and naval powers, adding the aim is to equip both the the Indian Air Force and the Indian Navy with capabilities at par with its adversaries.
To bolster its operational capability, the Navy has already finalised a plan to have 200 ships, 500 aircraft and 24 attack submarines in the next 3-4 years. At present, the Navy has around 132 ships, 220 aircraft and 15 submarines. The sources said the government is also determined to significantly enhance IAF's overall combat capabilities and a detailed plan is being finalised.
The government is also working on inducting the first batch of its intercontinental ballistic missile system - Agni V - which is expected to significantly bolster the country's air defence system. The missile, with a strike range of 5,000 km, is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead. Very few countries, including the US, China, Russia, France and North Korea, have such intercontinental ballistic missiles.
The report also added that government is focusing on developing the domestic defence industry and key policy initiatives are expected to be rolled out for it in the next couple of months. Apart from Agni V, India has Agni-1 (700 km range), Agni-2 (2,000-km range), Agni-3 (2,500 km range), and Agni-4 (3,500-km range).
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