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The Indian government has received the final Letter of Offer (LOA) from the US for the purchase of 31 armed MQ-9B drones. This follows the State Department’s initial notification on February 1st and a 30-day window for potential objections from US lawmakers.

The final LOA includes the negotiated price between the US and the manufacturer for the drones. The Indian Navy, the lead agency in this acquisition, will now review the details. If the price is deemed satisfactory, the proposal will be forwarded to the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) for final approval.

The Indian Navy will thoroughly examine the offer, focusing on aspects like cost, technical specifications, delivery timelines, and potential maintenance requirements. Based on the Navy’s evaluation, the proposal will reach the CCS, a high-level committee responsible for approving major defense purchases.

The CCS, chaired by the Prime Minister, will have the final say on whether to proceed with the deal. The timeframe for the Indian government’s decision-making process remains unclear. Potential factors influencing the CCS’s decision could include strategic considerations, budgetary constraints, and negotiations on technology transfer or co-production aspects.