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India’s quest for enhanced maritime surveillance and anti-submarine warfare capabilities takes a substantial leap forward with the Centre for Air Borne Systems (CABS) of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) nearing completion of technology development for the C-295-based Multi-mode Maritime Aircraft (MMMA) and Medium-Range Maritime Reconnaissance (MRMRA) Aircraft programs.

The project envisages two distinct configurations based on the Airbus C-295 platform, each addressing specific needs. The MMMA, primarily for the Indian Coast Guard, will focus on coastal security, search and rescue missions, and pollution surveillance. The MRMRA, destined for the Indian Navy, will prioritize anti-submarine warfare, long-range surveillance, and target acquisition, potentially playing a crucial role in safeguarding India’s vast maritime interests.

Both the Coast Guard and Navy have expressed initial interest in procuring 15 units, with 6 earmarked for the Coast Guard and 9 for the Navy. This initial order could potentially pave the way for larger fleet upgrades in the future.

One of the most significant revelations is the confirmation of the MRMRA variant’s ability to carry lightweight torpedoes. This capability significantly enhances the platform’s offensive potential, allowing it to engage both warships and submarines in times of conflict.

This project doesn’t just provide cutting-edge maritime aircraft; it also fosters indigenous expertise in critical technologies like radar systems, electronic warfare suites, and data integration platforms. This knowledge transfer lays the foundation for future independent development of advanced airborne military systems.

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