- Taking this into account, the Modi government is also looking into designing, developing, and making engines together with France.
- The Indian Air Force is running out of time because the Chinese air force and its armed drones are getting stronger.
After the Aeronautical Development Authority put a hold on the design of the fifth-generation stealth fighter, the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) went to the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), which is led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to get approval for the twin-engine Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA). By 2026, the first prototype of the GE-414-powered AMCA should be ready to go.
The DRDO has decided to ask the CCS for money at the same time that PM Modi has asked the organization to focus on what it does best and avoid delays and extra costs.
The LCA Tejas Mark II with a GE-414 engine is likely to hit the market next year, after certification tests on the air intake are finished in May and June of this year in France. Since Mark II’s air intake is the same as Mark I’s, the DRDO is sure that it will get the approval and release the first prototype by next year.
It is thought that the government has asked the DRDO to stick to project timelines and avoid delays in the name of “first-time development.” While India and the US are talking about transferring all of the technology needed to make GE-414 engines in India, the DRDO has chosen to use the same engine to power both the Mark II and the AMCA.
The Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) says that the Tejas Mark I has a range of 3000 km with its GE-404 engine, but the small fighter made its international debut in Abu Dhabi in February and was missing from bilateral drills in the UK and Australia.
“The plane is able and can go on long trips as long as it refuels. “But it’s up to the Indian Air Force to decide which planes to send to international drills,” said a top DRDO official.
The Narendra Modi government is committed to the Tejas program, but it also wants to hold DRDO responsible for the development of the fighter.
The Indian Air Force is running out of time because the Chinese air force and its armed drones are getting stronger. If the DRDO doesn’t meet its deadlines, the IAF will run out of wings in the next ten years, and the government will have to make quick purchases to keep its air power up and running.
Taking this into account, the Modi government is also looking into designing, developing, and making engines together with France. There is also a chance that Rafale jets could be made in India and sent to other countries. With its plan to buy F-15 EX fighters, the US has also said it would move its F-18 production line to India.
Given the new relationship between Russia and China and the changing geopolitical situation in Ukraine and Taiwan, India cannot continue to do business as usual. Instead, national organizations must work together for the good of the country and not for their own benefit.