DRDO Team Visiting Israel To Explore Defence Collaboration

New Delhi, Sept 21: | Updated: Sep 22 2003, 05:30am hrs
A high level Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) delegation led by Dr VK Atre is leaving early next month to Israel. During the visit, the delegation would seek Israeli collaboration in updating the Indian missile programme.

According to senior officials in the defence ministry, the visit is a follow up on the negotiations already held at New Delhi with Israeli delegation led by ministry of defence exports Chief Maj Gen Amos Mayer earlier this month during PM Ariel Sharons visit.

Officials said that India was seeking co-operation on both short-range missiles like C-skimming Danush, slated to be ready for induction to a new inertial navigation system (INS) and long-range missiles like the Agni III with 3000 km range, waiting to be test fired.Also on the agenda would be a joint collaboration to revive the extremely complex multi-target surface-to-air missile.

The delegation would discuss Indo-Israeli JVs in the production of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and electronic warfare and flight control systems for indigenous light combat aircraft.

The revival of the indigenous surface to air Trishul missile which has failed several test firings would also figure at the talks in Tel Aviv. The missile with a multi-target capability was being tested by DRDO in the anti-missile configuration but was put on the back burner following technological failure during trials.

Officials said the government has given the go ahead for joint collaboration with Israel for the UAVs and the delegation is likely to firm up arrangement before seeking CCS clearance for the deal.

Indias own indigenous UAV programme Nishant, which is at an advanced stage, is also expected to come up for discussions for tech transfer which New Delhi might seek.

The delegation is likely to talk about New Delhis proposed export of pilotless target aircraft (PTA) Pinaka which has already been demonstrated in Israeli soil.

Besides this, officials said the talks would also include anti-infiltration sensors on which India has developed some indigenous capability and on Indias air to air Beyond Visual Range (BVR) Astra missile.