The defence ministry on Saturday cleared a proposal for Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) to be developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation.
The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) at a meeting cleared the proposal for two AWACS, which includes buying two Airbus A330s, worth Rs.5,113 crore.
Airbus was the lone bidder for the programme and the DAC gave its approval to purchase the aircraft. This is the first deal in a single-vendor situation that has been sanctioned by the DAC.
However, no decision was taken on the multi-crore Avro replacement programme in which an Airbus-Tata consortium is the only bidder.
While two have been approved for now, eventually, six AWACS will be developed.
The system with a 360 degree coverage, will give India an edge in airborne surveillance compared to the present systems which have around 260 degrees coverage.
It has the capability to penetrate to greater distances within enemy territory and can spot fighter jets some 400 km deep inside Pakistan or China. The images from the system are transmitted in real time to ground based controllers.
A proposal for procuring Harpoon missiles for submarines was also cleared after a change in offset clause. The sources said 22 missiles will be procured for Rs.913 crore.
The DAC also cleared a Rs.710 crore proposal for acquiring 1,512 mine ploughs to be mounted on T90 tanks.
The plough clears mines ahead of the tank. A request for proposal (RFP) for the project will be issued soon, the sources said.
Other projects to get clearance include 220 truck mounted lifting devices, a crane like device to be mounted on heavy mobility vehicles, worth Rs.26 crore, and 30 weapon locating radars for Rs.1,605 crore.