Defence Acquisition Council approves AK-203 deal with Russia

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has granted permission for mass production of AK-203 rifles, providing fire power to the standard weapon profile of armed forces. DAC has also approved an independent satellite for Indian Air Force (IAF).

Key Points

  • This decision was taken ahead of scheduled visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to India beginning. His visit will start from December 5.
  • This deal was put on hold since 2018.
  • The DAC meeting was chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
  • During the meeting, Minister granted permission to manufacture 7.5 lakh AK-203 assault rifles for IAF, under ‘Make in India’ initiative.

Contract for AK-203 assault rifles

  • Contract was signed at over Rs 5,000 crore.
  • It will lead to manufacturing of 6,014,427 AK-203s for a period of 10-years.

Inter-governmental Agreement (IGA)

IGA was signed in February 2019. Under this agreement, first 70,000 rifles will include Russian components as technology transfers.

Kalashnikov Rifles

Manufacturing of the Kalashnikov Rifles or AK-203 will be done in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh. It will be manufactured jointly by Indo-Russia Rifles Pvt Ltd (IRRPL). IRRPL was created as a joint venture between Ordnance Factories Board (OFB) of India and Rosoboronexport & Concern Kalashnikov of Russia. OFB is holding 50.5 per cent stake in the concern, while Russian entities is holding the remaining 49.5 per cent share.

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