Prelims cum Mains Security Issues

India lining up defence deals worth $10 billion with US amid trade row

The News

  • In a boost to its maritime ISR capabilities (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance), India is in the final stages of acquiring Poseidon-8I maritime patrol aircraft from the US.


  • The Ministry of Defence has approved the acquisition of 10 Poseidon-8I aircraft from the US under the foreign military sales (FMS) programme.
  • In addition, India is also in the final stages of acquiring the armed version of Sea Guardian drone called Predator B that will improve the maritime ISR capabilities.


In focus: Poseidon-8I (India)


  • Poseidon 8I is a long range maritime patrol aircraft of Boeing.
  • India decided to acquire Poseidon 8I in 2009 in the aftermath of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack to improve its maritime ISR capabilities.
  • The Indian Navy had estimated the requirement of 22 Poseidon 8Is.
  • While India has already acquired 8 of these aircrafts, 4 more will be delivered by 2021-22.
  • Now the proposal to acquire 10 more P-8Is is in the final stages of approval.


  • Poseidon 8 India is a sophisticated Anti Submarine Warfare aircraft.
  • It is a long-range maritime patrol aircraft capable of undersea surveillance from a height of upto 40000 ft.
  • It is equipped with Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radars capable of engaging multiple targets simultaneously.
  • Magnetic Anomaly Detection (MAD) radar will help locate submarines in deep seas.
  • The India-version of Poseidon 8 is equipped with Harpoon Block-II missiles, MK-54 lightweight torpedoes to enhance its anti-submarine warfare capability.


In brief: Indo-US Defense partnership

  • India is a key partner in America’s efforts to ensure that the Indo-Pacific is a region of peace, stability and growing prosperity.
  • In 2016, India was awarded the status of a US major defence partner.
  • This allows India to receive license-free access to a wide range of military and dual-use technologies.
  • The two countries also agreed to an updated ten-year Defence Framework Agreement in June 2015 until 2025.
  • Recently India was elevated to the Strategic Trade Authorisation-1 status giving India the same access as NATO allies in high-technology dual-use exports.
  • Bilateral defence trade between India and the United States has risen from near zero to more than $15 billion since 2008.
  • Other deals in the pipeline under FMS route include
  • Naval multi-role MH-60 ‘Romeo’ helicopters
  • NASAMS-II a missile shield over Delhi
  • 6 Apache attack helicopters
  • M777 Ultra Light Howitzers
  • 24 MH-60R (Romeo) Multi-Role Helicopters
  • CH-47F (I) Chinook helicopters.


In brief: Apache helicopters

  • The AH-64 Apache is a multi-role combat helicopter.
  • India will acquire 6 Apache attack helicopter to bolster India’s ability to defend its homeland and deter “regional threats”.
  • The 6 helicopters are likely to be deployed against Pakistan and China.


In brief: MH-60R (Romeo) Seahawk helicopters

  • MH-60R is a naval multi-role helicopter
  • It will add to India’s anti-submarine warfare capability.
  • It is capable of being operated from various types of warships including frigates, destroyers, cruisers and aircraft carriers
  • It is the world’s most advanced maritime helicopter.


In brief: M777 Ultra light Howitzers

  • India has inducted M777 Ultra Light Howitzers in its artillery weapon system
  • The M777 is a 155-mm, 39-calibre towed artillery gun.
  • M777 is a medium artillery gun with a maximum range of 30 km.
  • It can be deployed in mountainous terrains devoid of roads.


In brief: CH-47F (I) Chinook helicopters

  • CH-47 Chinook is an advanced heavy-lift helicopter soon to be inducted in Indian Air Force
  • Chinook is a multi-role helicopter with vertical-lift platform, capable of air-lift services in both combat and humanitarian missions in difficult terrains.

Image result for chinook helicopter

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