C-295MW Transport Aircraft: Ministry of Defence (MoD), on September 24, 2021, signed a contract with M/s Airbus Defence and Space, Spain for the acquisition of 56 C-295MW transport aircraft for the Indian Air Force.
- Key Points:
- The MoD has also signed an Offset Contract with M/s Airbus Defence and Space through which M/s Airbus will discharge its offset obligations through direct purchase of eligible products and services from Indian Offset Partners.
- These contracts were signed following the approval accorded by the Cabinet Committee on Security earlier in September 2021.
- The induction of C-295MW will be a significant step towards modernisation of the transport fleet of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- The 56 C-295MW transport aircraft will replace the IAF’s ageing 56 Avro aircraft that were procured in the 1960s.
- It is the first project of its kind under which military aircraft will be manufactured in India by a private company.
About Airbus C295:
- It is a transport aircraft of five to 10 tonne capacity with contemporary technology.
- The aircraft is capable of operating from semi-prepared strips and has a rear ramp door for quick reaction and paradropping of troops and cargo.
- The plane can also be used for long deployments with its capability of up to 11 hours in the air.
- The C295’s Short Take-off and Landing (STOL) capability combined with a strong landing gear enable it to operate in the most austere locations with the worst conditions for take-off and landings.
About the deal:
- Under the deal, 16 aircraft will be delivered in a flyaway condition by the Airbus Defence and Space of Spain within 48 months of signing the contract.
- Out of 56 aircraft, 40 will be manufactured in India by a consortium of the Airbus Defence and Space and Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL).
- All the deliveries will be completed within 10 years of signing of the contract.
- All 56 aircraft will be installed with indigenous Electronic Warfare Suite.
- The aircraft will give a major boost to tactical airlift capability of IAF, especially in the Northern and North-Eastern sector and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
- The project will provide a major boost to the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan that offers an opportunity for the Indian private sector to enter into technology intensive and highly competitive aviation industry.
- The project will give a boost to aerospace ecosystem in India wherein several MSMEs spread over the country will be involved in manufacturing of parts of the aircraft.
- The program will also involve development of specialized infrastructure in the form of hangars, buildings, aprons and taxiway.
About Avro-748 planes:
- The Avro Hawker Siddeley HS748 is a twin-engine turboprop military transport and freighter of British origin.
- The aircraft, which could carry 48 paratroopers or six tonnes of freight, has been in the IAF fleet since the 1960s.
- IAF is an acronym for the Indian Air Force of India.
- It is the air arm of the Indian Armed Forces.
- It was officially established on 8 October 1932 as an auxiliary air force of the British Empire which honoured India’s aviation service during World War II with the prefix Royal.
- With the government’s transition to a Republic in 1950, the prefix Royal was removed.
- The present Commander-in-Chief of IAF is Ram Nath Kovind.
- The Chief of Air Staff, an air chief marshal, is a four-star officer and is responsible for the bulk of operational command of the Air Force.
- The present Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) is Air Marshal V R Chaudhari, PVSM, AVSM, VM.