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SOURCE:  Joydeep Ghosh / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

There are a few commonsensical idea that we in India can make do to match up with the shortfall in defense preparedness. But one question remains, how long IA,IAF, IN will make do with jugaad. The last one is not fully my own idea though. ? ? but still read on.

1. Don’t Make 2 Frigates @ Goa Shipyard Ltd. & Send the 2 half Built Ships back to Russia

Common sense dictates that it will be a foolish idea for India to build 2 Grigorivitch-class frigates at Goa, why the reasons are listed below:-

  1. It takes 4 ships to be built to amortise the investment done in manufacturing a certain class of ship under naval requirement as per normal practice, remember for civilian ships it’s a different parameter. So it will require spending of tax payers money, to gain experience, training of staff and infrastructure setup. But to build just 2 ships is sheer waste of tax payers money, time and investment. Also, the fact that Goa Shipyard doesn’t have experience in building such big ships, also makes it important not to waste money here.

  2. It is being said 2 half-built ships are also part of the deal since Ukraine has refused to supply engines for them after Russia annexed Crimea. India should never use these ships instead buy engines from Ukraine, install them at Mazagaon Dockyard and send them back to Russia, since these two ships are optimized to operate in cold Russian waters, not warm Indian Ocean waters.

  3. The money that India will spend on buying the engines for the 2 ships from Ukraine and spend time to install them at Mazagaon Docks must be adjusted with costing for building these two at Yantar shipyard, Russia where all 6 Trishul class frigates have been built till date.

  4. Yantar shipyard, Russia can deliver these ships at much faster rates costing much less, it is perhaps this reason that better sense is creeping in MoD and plans are already afoot to ask Russia to build these two Grigorivitch ships in Russia.

  5. Most importantly I hope that from now on MoD gives shipbuilding order in batches of 4 only.

2. Give GRSE orders to build 1 more of P17A frigate & Ask Yantar Shipyard to build 2 more Frigates

The stated requirement for Indian Navy is for 24 frigates. But where are the numbers? Common sense dictates that its high time MoD, Indian Navy and shipyards like MDL/GRSE do their maths right.

  1. In Godavari class 1 ship is operational and on the way out in near future. 3 Brahmaputra class ships are fairly new and operational, 6 Talwar class ships are operational and new fairly new. 3 Shivalik class ships are also new and operational. So number now adds to 12 only.

  2. Talks are on to build 4 more Talwar/Trishul ships at Yantar Shipyard. Better ask them build 6, remember as said above 4+2 in lieu of India working on 2 half-built Grigorivitch-class frigates. That will take the number of Talwar/Trishul/Grigorivitch ships to 12. Make no mistake time taken by Yantar to build 1 such ship is almost half of what MDL or GRSE take. It’s a different matter that in shipyards of India we have people working on only 1 shift whereas in foreign shipyards people work on atleast 2 shifts daily.

  3. Plans to build 7 P17A class ships on track with 4 to be built at MDL and 3 at GRSE. But as I said building 4 ships atleast makes it sense, so better assign GRSE with 4 ships.

  4. If P17A works starts today the 1st ship will be commissioned by 2028 only.

  5. That way we will have by atleast 2035 we may have atleast 12 Talwar/Trishul/Grigorivitch ships, 8 P17A ships, 3 Shivaliks, and 3 Brahmaputra ships. The count will be 2 more than 24 but by that time atleast 1 Brahmaputra ship, the lead vessel will be up for retirement.

  6. So in effect by 2040 Indian Navy will have with 23 frigates only. That’s 20 years from now.

3. France is giving 31 Jaguars + spares & 2 Mirage 2000 trainers, Oman 2 Jaguars + engines+ spares, UK 2 Jaguars trainers

Common sense dictates that better go for more Mirage 2000 from Peru, Brazil & Jaguars from Nigeria. But French help will be needed to do that. I guess to ensure they get reselected in MMRCA 2.O they will readily help; Why the reasons are given below:-

  1. Indian air force needs atleast 49 squadrons of fighter planes but only 42 have been sanctioned and currently we are down to 31 and very quickly we will be down to 28 by end of 2019.

  2. So to makeup for the shortfall adding Mirages and Jaguars is the stop gap/jugaad option left

  3. Brazil that flew 12 Mirage 2000 B/C versions and retired them as recently in 2013 can be cannibalized for parts to keep the IAF Mirage 2000 flying.

  4. Peru that flies 12 Mirage 2000P/DP that are the newest air frames and have recently got upgrades, Peru plans to fly them till 2025 and retire them, India can cajole Peru through France to sell these to India ASAP and then if possible cannibalize them for parts or fly them by upgrading them to Mirage 2000 UPG standard that IAF flies currently.

  5. Nigeria Air Force operated 18 Jaguars for just about 10 years before withdrawing them, may be these jets are still intact and with French help can be brought in and cannibalized as spare parts.

  6. All these measure plus the Jaguar re-engining of 80 airframes will keep the Jaguars and Mirage 2000 flying for atleast 20 more years.

  7. France would readily try to help in these cases as it will definitely want IAF to reselect RAFALE jets in MMRCA 2.0.

 

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Article by Joydeep Ghosh /,  cannot be republished Partially or Full without consent from Writer or idrw.org