The Ministry of Defence of India has cancelled the deal of $500 million with Israel. The deal to develop Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missile was on the process between India and Israel and it cost nearly $500 million. The deal was showing the growing cooperation of defence between India and Israel.
The nations were expected to sign the deal after price negotiation with Rafael Advanced Defence System Of Israel. For successfully running this deal, Rafael of Israel joined hands with Kalyani group for missile production in India which is inaugurated in Hyderabad in August.
Now, Defence Minister of India asked DRDO (Defence Research And Development Organization) to develop indigenously a Man-Portable Anti-Tank Guided Missile for the Indian army.
As per the sources of Defence Ministry, the decision to cancel this deal was based on the fact that importing a foreign ATGM at this level will have adverse effects on the indigenous development program of weapon arrangements made by DRDO. Earlier, India had rejected a proposal from American-based Raytheon-Lockheed Martin for Javelin ATGM in favour of Israel’s weapon system.
In the words of sources, “DRDO has successfully produced the Nag and Anamika ATGMs. It is confident to provide the Army with an MPATGM of 3rd generation missile technology, at par with Spike, within three to four years. It won’t also need any transfer of technology.”
Earlier in its letter to Ministry of Defence, the Army headquarters argued the operational urgency of the equipment. They wrote in favour of Spike, “It gives a major capability impetus to troops deployed on the Line of Control, especially in the current operational scenario.”
What Is Spike?
The third generation ATGM with the top attack, fire and forget missile target at a range of 2.5 km in the day and at night as well. The current scenario in the army is they are using 2nd generation ATGM named Konkurus and Milan 2T which can the only day fighting capabilities. Also, Army is facing the shortage of around 68,000 missiles, with no missiles held War Wastage Reserves against a government stipulation.
Ministry of Defence approached an offer to buy 321 ATGM launcher and 8,356 missiles with a clause to transfer of technology and 30 percent offset. The offer was accepted by only Rafael of Israel and held a trial of Spike missile in 2011-12, then deal was done between Israel and India.
In October 2014, MoD agreed to procure the missile from Rafael after being satisfied with the solution of problem-related to two homing devices in the launcher occurred in the trial. Later, in 2015, the price negotiation between Rafael and MoD took place and finalized in June 2016.
Manohar Parrikar, the defence Minister later formed a committee to evaluate the deal. In the committee of experts on the matter, there was a deviation in the views of representatives of DRDO and representatives of the army. After all, this was finally resolved at the end of this month, where the Army headquarters agreed to withdraw RFP for ATGM launchers and missiles.