India is contemplating a deal that would see it build a domestic version of Russia’s S-400 Triumf air defence system, according to an IAF veteran and top military analyst. State-owned Russian corporation Rostec recently revealed that India and Russia are in talks over the possibility of building a production line to make the S-400, which NATO calls the SA-21 Growler, in India.

“India would need more S-400 systems and is indeed contemplating a follow-up purchase following satisfactory completion of supply of the five systems already contracted for,” said military analyst Vijainder K. Thakur. Washington has threatened to impose economic sanctions on India should it go ahead with the deal, estimated to be worth $5.43 billion for five S-400 units. Continue reading

SOURCE: Ajai Shukla / Business Standard

Serious drawbacks were highlighted last week in the defence ministry’s so-called “Strategic Partner” (SP) model of procurement, when five Indian entities submitted Expressions of Interest (EoI) for being the SP in Project 75-I – the plan to build six conventional submarines for an estimated Rs 45,000 crore.

There were two responses from the private sector – Larsen & Toubro (L&T) and Reliance Naval and Engineering (RNaval). Another two came from defence public sector shipyards – Mazagon Dock Ltd, Mumbai (MDL) and Hindustan Shipyard Ltd, Visakhapatnam (HSL). A fifth response came from a proposed special purpose vehicle (SPV) between HSL and Adani Defence, even though SPVs were not invited to bid. HSL thus submitted two bids, effectively competing against itself. Continue reading


Less than a week before US President Donald Trump, in a special gesture, appears along with India Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the ‘Howdy, Modi!’ event at Houston, a revelation took place on Monday that has the potential to take the sails out of the India-US ship of bonhomie.

In a disclosure that has far-reaching implications, Sergey Chemezov, head of Rostec, told Russian business daily RBC in an interview that India is in talks with Russia to jointly manufacture the very powerful S-400 air defence missile system. The development will likely further antagonise the US that has threatened strong sanctions on countries that buys such weapons from Russia. Continue reading


CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories that is developing a 19-seater indigenous light transport aircraft ‘SARAS-MK2’ has plans for a 70-seater aircraft, Union Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Monday.“Today itself they have started talking to me to get the permissions from and meetings with civil aviation ministry for their future plan of the 70-seater. That is also very heartening to know,” Harsh Vardhan said.

“Seventy-seater has always been in the long-term vision and since they have mentioned about this today we will have to bring the civil aviation ministry on board. We have to take the approval of the Prime Minister’s office. Also, we will have to take scientists also on board, so as a science and technology minister I will facilitate them to move in the right direction,” he said. Continue reading


Soldiers in the Indian Army may soon be equipped with exoskeleton technology that will improve their situational awareness, protection, speed, and strength.

India has been increasing expenditure on researching and upgrading the wearable gear that its soldiers will wear on the battlefield. In order to keep up with the competition on the continuously advancing battlefield, soldiers need to be up to date with the most advanced helmets, armor, C4I capabilities, night vision capabilities and more. However, equipping all these military advancements onto an individual soldier is a difficult task, mainly due to the extra weight the soldier will have to carry. That is why leading countries such as Russia and the United States have already invested resources in researching and developing battery powered exoskeletons capable of literally strengthening the wearer. Continue reading


When United States (US) President Donald Trump joins Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 50,000-strong public rally in Houston next week, it will showcase the strength of the US-India relationship. But the powerful symbolism should not blind us to the divergent US and Indian interests in India’s neighbourhood, especially the Afghanistan-Pakistan (Af-Pak) region. Indeed, before the rally, Trump will likely get the India trade deal that he has sought.

The collapse of the deal between the chief US negotiator, Zalmay Khalilzad, and the Afghan Taliban is unlikely to compel the US to adopt a long-term approach to the Af-Pak region so that it ceases to be the global hotbed of terrorism. Even if Trump had signed off on the deal, it would not have brought peace to Afghanistan. Indeed, it would have only triggered a new war between Afghan nationalists and Pakistan’s proxies. Continue reading


Pakistan plans to send its first astronaut to space by 2022 with the help of its close ally China, Minister for Science and Technology has said.The selection process for the astronaut would start in 2020, Federal Minister for Science and Technology, Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said on Sunday.

China would collaborate with Pakistan in its space mission, Mr Fawad was quoted as saying by the News International reported.He said that initially 50 individuals would be selected after which the list will be shortened to 25 in 2022. And out of them only one would be sent to space. Continue reading


In her seminal account ‘Fighting To The End — The Pakistan Army’s Way of War’, author C Christine Fair makes several leading points. Among them, she believes that the Pakistani nuclear deterrent is aimed at a situation when its conventional forces are overrun by the Indian Army, leaving them with no option but to push the nuclear button.

Not surprisingly, Prime Minister Imran Khan, himself regarded as a top Pakistani Army stooge whose election victory was engineered by the military, is parroting the same lines. He has said — significantly, more than once — that a loss in a conventional war may trigger a nuclear conflict. Continue reading


United States space agency NASA’s lunar probe will fly over the landing site of Chandryaan-2’s Vikram Lander on the Moon on Tuesday, September 17. New information regarding the condition of the lander is expected from this expedition. NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter will try to locate India’s Vikram lander on the moon during a flyover of the landing site Tuesday, Noah Petro, LRO’s project scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center told

The lunar probe will also release the images taken of Vikram lander, to help the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) carry out their attempts to restore communication with the lander. Continue reading


Pakistan has refused to engage in back-door diplomacy with India after some “powerful countries” as well as Muslim states sought it to de-escalate tensions between the two neighbours over Kashmir, Pakistani daily the Express Tribune reported on Monday. The daily reported that a request for Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan to tone down his attacks on his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, too, was turned down.

The Express Tribune quoted unnamed officials saying Pakistan has made it clear that it would only engage with India through quiet or conventional diplomacy after New Delhi was persuaded to meet conditions like lifting curfew and other restrictions imposed in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). Continue reading


After asking Masood Azhar to lie low for months, a frustrated Pakistani establishment has again brought him to the forefront of its terrorist activities. The Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief is back in action, resuming his religious “preaching”, with the objective of recruiting cadre for terror operations in India.

Azhar had gone “underground” in the last few months and had stopped delivering his religious discourse—which is attended by thousands of people—mostly at his palatial and well-guarded Jamia Masjid Subhan Allah mosque in Bahawalpur. The Sunday Guardian has accessed Azhar’s most recent audio clip, which, in most likelihood, was recorded earlier this week. In this discourse, Azhar is heard asking the “Kashmiri” youngsters  how they can tolerate what is “happening” in India, in the context of the abrogation of Article 370 on 5 August. Continue reading


A record gain in crude oil prices could further aggravate India’s fiscal situation and make it tougher for the government and the central bank to effectively combat a slowdown in economic growth.

With drone attacks on Saudi Aramco’s facilities causing the biggest-ever disruption in oil suppliers, India is preparing to stem the impact of the price surge. Saudi Aramco has, however, assured India that it will honour its supply contracts despite the production cuts, Indian government officials said on condition of anonymity. Continue reading


Calling upon young engineers working on innovative technologies to manufacture equipment for Indian Navy, Rear Admiral V M Doss, assistant chief of the naval staff (Air Material), on Monday asked them to be part of its indigenization plan and help reduce import of defence equipment.

Motivating students of National Institute of Technology (NIT) Trichy to pursue a career in Indian Navy, he explained the opportunities thrown up by Navy for entrepreneurs and their startups. While calling upon next generation engineers to contribute to the nation, he told students that they need not join Indian Navy to pursue a career but start their own company and contribute to the indigenization of Navy. Since India depends on 65% imports for its defence equipment needs, he termed it as an area of opportunity for young minds. Continue reading


In another step towards women empowerment in India’s defence forces, Indian Air Force (IAF) Wing Commander Anjali Singh has been appointed as India’s first woman defence attache at any of the country’s missions abroad. Wing Commander Singh has been posted with the Indian embassy in Moscow, Russia, as the Deputy Air Attache on September 10. She is an Aeronautical Engineer (Electronics) officer with 17 years of service and has been trained on the MiG-29  combat aircraft.

The position of defence attaches in the Army, Air Force or Navy, have only been given to male officers until the appointment of Wing Commander Singh. Continue reading


Days after a brief stand-off between Indian and Chinese soldiers in eastern Ladakh, Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Northern Army Command, visited the region on Monday and interacted with the troops.
Lt Gen Singh was seen on board an interceptor boat used in the region and addressing a gathering of soldiers.

This visit is likely to send a clear message to the Chinese military about India’s commitment to defend its boundaries. “He was briefed on the operational situation and readiness being maintained in the sector,” a statement from the army said. “Lt Gen Ranbir Singh interacted with the troops deployed at the forward locations and complimented them for their tenacity and dedication to duty in extreme terrain and in conditions of adversity. He urged them to continue to uphold the highest standards of professionalism of the Indian Army,” it added. Continue reading