According to the French proposal for the 26 Rafale Marine aircraft, their Navy will give two to four of its marine fighter aircraft for training to the Indian Navy within six months after contract signature.

According to defence sources, the French Navy will provide two to four Rafale Marine aircraft within six months of contract signing, while the first aircraft for the Indian Navy will not be delivered until 36 months after contract signing.

According to them, the aircraft handed to the Indian Navy will assist Indian pilots perfect their flying abilities on Rafale maritime fighter aircraft until the aircraft obtained from the French government is ready for flying operations.

The agreement for 26 Rafale Marine aircraft, including 22 single-seaters and four twin-seaters, was approved by the Defence Ministry.According to Indian Navy plans, INS Hansa in Goa, as well as the future Karwar naval facility, INS Deegha near Vishakhapatnam, and INS Rajali in Tamil Nadu, will serve as the hub for these aircraft’s operations.
Once the Indian Navy acquires a significant number of its own aircraft for training and operational purposes, the French Navy aircraft will return to their stations. According to ANI, the French manufacturers of the Rafale are also considering involving large Indian corporations such as the TATA group and several medium and small industries across the country to promote ‘Make-in-India’ in the defence sector.

The Indian Navy had carried out the trials of the French Rafale and American F-18 aircraft in which the French plane was recommended by the Indian Navy for final acquisition.After following all procedures, the deal was first taken up for clearance by Defence Procurement Board earlier this week on Monday while the Defence Acquisition Council gave its approval to the project one Thursday.

This would be India’s second Rafale aircraft contract with France under an inter-governmental agreement, following the one struck in September 2016 for 36 fighters for the Indian Air Force.

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