The defence ministry on Friday cleared proposals to buy six more C-130J ‘Super Hercules’ planes and 235 T-90 tanks, deals with a combined value of more than Rs 10,000 crore.
The defence acquisition council, headed by defence minister AK Antony, approved a follow-on order worth more than Rs 4,000 crore for six C-130Js - configured for special operations and airborne assault.
It also paved the way for placing an order for 235 T-90 tanks worth Rs 6,000 crore with the Ordnance Factory Board. The tanks will be manufactured with transfer of technology from Russia.
The proposals will be sent to the PM-headed Cabinet Committee of Security for final clearance.
The Indian Air Force already has a fleet of six C-130J planes, based at Hindan. India had on August 20 landed one of those planes at the world’s highest airstrip, Daulat Beg Oldie, in north-eastern Ladakh, barely eight km from the Line of Actual Control (LAC). The move signalled India’s aggressive stance towards China following a spurt in incursions in that sensitive sector.
There are indications that the new planes could be based in the eastern sector where the army is setting up a new mountain strike corps to counter China.