Amidst the debate of prioritising its requirements due to budgetary constraints, the ministry of defence, in March, had given the go-ahead to armed forces to procure military platforms on rent from friendly countries.
Since then, both Indian Air Force and Navy are in the process of finalising multiple platforms that can be procured on lease till indigenous platforms under development are inducted into service. The Army, however, is yet to look into this option.
However, some experts believe that the option to lease has always turned out to be a costly affair compared to outright purchase.
While addressing the annual presser last month, IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal R.K.S. Bhadauria had said the Air Force could acquire midair refuellers on lease under the government’s new leasing policy. He, however, clarified that
“leasing” has got nothing to do with budgetary constraints, but is an evolution of the defence acquisition processes and procedures. “It will give the service some flexibility. IAF has been trying to acquire its critical need of mid-air refuellers for long time,” he added.
Apart from refueller aircraft, the IAF is looking at leasing its trainer aircraft and even the Light Utility Helicopters (LUH) for short duration.Read more…