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CAG raises questions over Akash missile’s reliability

The national auditor questioned the reliability of an indigenously developed surface to air missile inducted by the Indian Air Force.

india Updated: Jul 29, 2017 00:10 IST
Rahul Singh
Rahul Singh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
CAG,Akash missile,Indian Air Force
The Akash missile displayed during the Republic Day parade in New Delhi. (REUTERS File Photo)

The Comptroller and Auditor General has raised questions over the reliability of an indigenously developed surface to air missile inducted by the Indian Air Force, revealing that a third of the missiles tested failed.

In its latest report tabled in the Parliament on Friday, the national auditor also revealed that the missiles were to be deployed in the ‘S’ sector (reference to northeast) during 2013-15 for deterrence but the target has still not been achieved.

Though the report has identified the weapon as ‘Z’ missile, sources here identified it as the Akash missile.

“Out of 80 missiles received up to November 2014, 20 missiles were test fired during April-November 2014. Six of these missiles i.e., 30%, failed the test,” the report said.

The auditor said preliminary analysis revealed that the missiles fell short of the target, were low on velocity and critical components malfunctioned. Two of the missiles failed to even take off. “These deficiencies pose an operational risk during hostilities,” the report warned.

The missiles systems have been bought from state-owned Bharat Electronics Limited at a cost of Rs 3,619 crore. The decision to deploy the missiles in the northeast was taken in 2010.

The life span of the missile is around 10 years. The report said, “Out of ‘Z’ missiles held by IAF, more than three years life of 70 missiles, between two to three years of 150 missiles and one to two years life of 48 missiles, had expired by March 2017.”

The report said the missiles bought at a high cost would remain usable for significantly less period than their stipulated life.

First Published: Jul 29, 2017 00:10 IST