India to get 36 Rafale fighter jets in defence deal with France

Photo of Rafale fighter jets which was developed by France.

New Delhi: India today signed defence deal along with France in which 36 Rafale fighter jet will be delivered to Indian Air Force (IAF) that will cost around (Rs 59,000 crore approx) in Indian currency.

The deal was signed between India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar with his French counterpart Jean-Yves Ie Drian.

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The deal for Rafale fighter jets was signed at the cost of Euro 7.87-billion (Rs 59,000 crore approx), the fighter jet will be equipped with latest missiles and weapon system besides multiple India-specific modifications that will give the IAF cutting edge capability over arch rival Pakistan.

The deal was signed by Defence Minister and his visiting French counterpart sixteen months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced India’s plans to buy 36 Rafale fighter aircraft in fly away condition during his trip to France.

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The deal comes with a saving of nearly 750 million Euros, gained through hard negotiations by the Indian side, over the one struck during the previous UPA government, which was scrapped by the Narendra Modi government, besides a 50 per cent offset clause.

The delivery of these combat aircraft, will start in 36 months and will be completed in 66 months from the date the contract is inked, comes equipped with state-of-the-art missiles like ‘Meteor’ and ‘Scalp’ that will give IAF a capability that had been sorely missing in its arsenal.

The features that make the Rafale a strategic weapon in the hands of IAF include its Beyond Visual Range (BVR) Meteor air-to-air missile with a range in excess of 150 km.

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Its integration on the Rafale jets will mean IAF can hit targets inside both Pakistan and across the northern and eastern borders while staying within India’s territorial boundary.