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Defence Ministry approves buying of C-130J Super Hercules aircraft

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NEW DELHI (PTI): The Defence Ministry on Thursday approved the buying of one C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, worth about Rs 900 crore, to replace the one that had crashed in 2014 killing five crew members, including four officers.

The decision to purchase a new one was taken by the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), chaired by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.

The aircraft, worth over Rs 900 crore, had crashed while practising a tactical operation along with another C-130J Super Hercules aircraft after taking off from Agra on March 28, 2014.

The IAF had inducted six C-130J Super Hercules aircraft which were bought from the US at a cost of around Rs 6,000 crore (US$ 1 billion) in 2010. India has already ordered for six additional aircraft.

The DAC has also approved procurement of 58 night vision goggles for pilots, for night enablement, Defence sources said.

The DAC reviewed progress of capital acquisition proposals in current financial year. Since May 2016, ten acquisition schemes worth approximately Rs 16,000 crore have been approved including 6 at CCS level, sources said.

In addition, four major acquisitions worth Rs 15,000 crore have been cleared by MoD and have been forwarded for consideration of CCS.

With over Rs 31,000 crore major acquisitions either contracted or at advanced stage, the DAC urged the Services and the Ministry to expedite the process.

It was also said that as against 329 Acceptance of Necessity (AON) worth over Rs 5 lakh crore in pipeline in April 2014, today there are about 235 AONs in pipeline.

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