India awards $4 billion defence aircraft deal to US

Close on the heels of denying a $10 billion fighter jet deal to the US, India seemed to be applying a healing touch to the country by awarding a $4 billion aircraft contract to it.

The Cabinet Committee on security has cleared a $4 billion plus deal with the US to purchase of C-17 aircraft. The aircraft will be used by the defence for transporting equipment and other air-lifting operations.

The deal has come close on the heels of the rejection of USA’s F16 and and F18 fighter jets in the biggest defence purchase India has ever considered.

The two were rejected in favor of the French fighter Rafale and the European consortium’s Tyhoon or Eurofighter.

The C-17s, made by Boeing, will be used to do heavy lifting by the Indian Air Force. India had, last year, decided to buy 10 of them. The deal was also pushed strongly by Obama on his recent visit to India.

The decision to buy the aircraft led to some excited discussions about whether India really needed such heavy capacity planes or not.


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