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Tejas misses another deadline for being fully combat-ready

Tejas misses another deadline for being fully combat-ready: The indigenous Tejas fighter, first approved in 1983, has missed yet another deadline and The indigenous Tejas is keen to become fully combat-ready very soon.

LCA Tejas Still Not Combat-Ready, Another Deadline For Final Operational Clearance Missed

Post various target revisions, the government had repetitively and continuously declared over the last 2 years that the jet would get its final operational clearance (FOC) by this June of 2018.

But Tejas, the single-engine is still far away from achieving the FOC, prior to its mad dash costs and operational concerns, say defence ministry on an official media report.

The overall development and production cost of the first 123 light-weight Tejas is estimated– only nine delivered till now in their initial operational clearance (IOC) configuration – has also whoosh past Rs 75,000 crore.

Desperately India required its own home-grown fighter, with IAF down to just 31 fighter squadrons when at least 42 are necessary to tackle Pakistan and China. The fall in numbers will continue because of the progressive retirement of 10 squadrons of old MiG-21s and MiG-27s.

India also relaunched its Rs 1.25 lakh crore project which is to acquire 114 fighters, the bulk of them to be built nationally, in April.

But it’s still early days for this long-drawn contest among F/A-18 and F-16 (US), Gripen-E (Sweden), MiG-35 (Russia), Rafale (France) and Eurofighter Typhoon, for which the six aviation majors submitted to their initial bids on the last week.

The continuing delay in Tejas, as a result, remainders a large operational worry. The DRDO had grandiosely declared Tejas would get FOC, In 2011, which means the jets are ready for battle — by 2012. Six years down the line, still it is a dream.

“The entire project management of Tejas needs to be overhauled. Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd is far away from delivering 16 Tejas per year as required. MoD is also examining the Rs 50,000 crore being demanded by HAL for producing 83 Tejas Mark-1A fighters, with 43 improvements over the existing version,” told by an official.

For now, Tejas needs to demonstrate its “engine relight and air-to-air refuelling” capabilities and firing from its twin-barrel GSh-23 cannon.

despite the fact, that Navy has discarded its aircraft carrier-capable variant, IAF has put its weight behind Tejas. In addition to the “committed” 123 jets, it is open to introduce another 201 Tejas Mark-II jets if they are entirely new fighters with some pretty better avionics and radars, enhanced fuel and weapons carrying capacity, and more powerful engines, as per the news was reported TOI in the previous time.