A Rafale fighter jet flies over the factory of French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation in Merignac near Bordeaux during a visit by the French President March 4, 2015. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau/Files
Reuters: Indian cabinet approves purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets
India's cabinet cleared the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets from Dassault Aviation on Wednesday, paving the way for signing a deal that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is betting on to modernize the air force, a government source told Reuters.
The acquisition is part of a $150-billion military overhaul India has launched, drawing global arms makers into one of the world's most promising markets.
Under the deal, India will get 36 Rafale jets ready to go straight into service. India's fighter aircraft fleet, comprising Russian, British and French planes, is down to 33 squadrons as against the air force's requirement of 45 to counter a "two-front collusive threat" from Pakistan and China.
The two countries will sign the final deal on Friday, the source, who did not wish to be named as he is not authorized to speak to the media, said.
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WNU Editor: Some are wondering if this is the reason why India wants these fighters .... Need a Fighter Jet to Drop Nukes, No Questions Asked? Buy French (War Is Boring). More here .... Behind Rafale deal: Their ‘strategic’ role in delivery of nuclear weapons (Indian Express).
More News On India Agreeing To Purchase 36 Rafale Fighter Jets
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India Clears Dassault’s Rafale Fighter Jet Deal -- WSJ
India to ink mega Rafale fighter deal with France on Friday -- Times of India
Rafale Deal worth $ 8.9 billion cleared by Cabinet Committee; contract for 36 fighter jets to be inked on September 23! -- India.com