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IAF hoping to sign Mirage upgrade deal by March

IAF chief said the aircraft would have modern avionics, new electronic warfare equipment and would get a life extension of 20 years.



IAF chief said the
aircraft would have modern avionics, new electronic warfare
equipment and would get a life extension of 20 years.

The deal was earlier expected to be signed during French
President Nicolas Sarkozy`s visit last year but was postponed
as the issues had remained unresolved then.

Giving details of the upgrade, the IAF chief said the
aircraft would have modern avionics, new electronic warfare
equipment and would get a life extension of 20 years.

On the procurement of mid-air refuelling aircraft, Naik
said the cancellation of the procurement procedure last year
had delayed the induction of more such aircraft in the force.

After a five-year process, the last tender was cancelled
after Finance Ministry objected over IAF`s choice for buying
Airbus 330 citing its high price.

As per the procurement procedure, if two aircraft are
meeting the requirements specified in the tender, the one with
lower price has to be selected.

After the cancellation of the tender, the IAF has
reissued the Request For Proposal (RFP) to global
manufacturers.

On the indigenously developed Intermediate jet trainer
aircraft, Naik said it was expected to get its Initial
Operational Clearance (IOC) by July this year.

On the plans to re-engine the deep penetration fighter
Jaguar, the IAF chief said it has issued RFPs to engine
manufacturers Honeywell and Rolls Royce. "We are looking to
re-engine 60-plus Jaguars and procure over 200 engines," he
added.

PTI

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