The United States Department of Defense has approved India’s request to purchase $90 million (Rs 660 crore) worth of equipment, logistical support and spare parts for its C-130J Super Hercules cargo aircraft fleet, PTI reported.
India has ordered aircraft consumables spares and repair or return parts, flare cartridges, ground support and equipment, BBU-35/B cartridge impulse squibs and Cartridge Actuated Devices/Propellant Actuated Devices fire extinguisher cartridges from US. Apart from these, other items include a spare AN/ALR-56M Advanced Radar Warning Receiver shipset, 10 lightweight night vision binoculars (F5032), a spare AN/ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser system shipset, 10 AN/AVS-9 night vision goggles (NVG)(F4949) along with GPS and electronic warfare.
India is also seeking to procure instruments and lab equipment support, cryptographic device spares and loaders, joint mission planning system, software and software support, personnel training and training and training equipment, publications and technical documentation, contractor engineering, technical and logistical support, and other related elements of programme support.
The US Defence Security Cooperation Agency said in its notification to Congress that the proposed sale will strengthen the country’s relationship with India and improve the security of a major defence partner. It added that India continues to be an important force to maintain political stability, peace and economic progress in the South Asia and the Indo-Pacific region.
The notification also said that the proposed sale will ensure that previously-procured Super Hercules aircraft operate effectively to serve the transport requirements of the Indian Air Force, Army and Navy, local and international humanitarian assistance and regional disaster relief.
India will have no difficulty buying the additional sustainment support, the notification said. The proposed sale will not affect the basic military balance in the area, it added.
This procurement of spares and services will allow the Indian Air Force to sustain a higher mission-ready status fleet.
The Arms Export Control Act in the United States makes it mandatory to issue notification for such major sales. Legislators have 30 days to review the sale, which will be executed by defence company Lockheed-Martin.
India is among the 17 countries the US has sold the Super Hercules aircraft. The Indian Air Force currently has a fleet of five C-130Js. India has also placed another order for six additional C-130J-30s. The US had widely used the aircraft in Afghanistan and Iraq.