The decision for the next step in the purchase of long-pending Japanese amphibious plane US-2i is expected to get delayed further as the next Defence Acquisition Council cannot take place due to the vacant post of Chief of Integrated Staff (CISC) in the ministry of defence.
The CISC’s main task, according to experts, is to provide domain expertise to the defence minister in all proposals under Capital Defence acquisition.
Now, the Japanese side which has been waiting for the government to take the next step in the purchase of the US-2i, is mulling shifting focus from New Delhi to Kuala Lumpur after the latter has shown interest in the amphibious aircraft.
In fact, this concern related to the delay from the Indian side would be raised by Japanese defence minister Gen Nakatani during his meeting with his Indian counterpart Manohar Parrikar in June on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue 2016 slated to be held in Singapore.
“The Japanese defence minister who was expected to be in India on April 29, had postponed his travel due to earthquake in his country,” sources in the MoD told FE. “The two ministers will now meet in Singapore,” they added.