Indian Military News, Reports, Data, etc.


paintgun

Senior Member
do you guys agree to the view that Indian Navy is the more well established one amongst the branches?

i saw praises from Indian forums towards their navy, and from the news it does makes sense if they are the most professional in the force, platform is uniformly Russian based with some mix of Israeli weapons systems and integrations, with the exception of submarine delays, the navy is looking good
 

Bltizo

Lieutenant General
Staff member
Super Moderator
do you guys agree to the view that Indian Navy is the more well established one amongst the branches?

i saw praises from Indian forums towards their navy, and from the news it does makes sense if they are the most professional in the force, platform is uniformly Russian based with some mix of Israeli weapons systems and integrations, with the exception of submarine delays, the navy is looking good
It's hard to gauge just how "capable" the navy is, even if it's judging equipment, time spent at sea etc. remember the reddit firestorm last year with the supposed USN officer who was aboard the INS delhi?

Personally I think the three branches of the Indian military are more or less equal in standing, although the navy does have a more conformal force, with most ships having russian origins. A problem with the IN is that it takes Indian shipyards quite a while to get out vessels. The first kolkata class DDG was laid down in late 2003, with the third/last to come into service at early 2014. (comparing with PLA only out of familiarity, compare with USN works too) From 2009 being "laid down"/modules built, to 2014, all six of the second batch of 052C+s are expected to come into service. That's twice as many ships in less than half the time.
 

asif iqbal

Brigadier
do you guys agree to the view that Indian Navy is the more well established one amongst the branches?

i saw praises from Indian forums towards their navy, and from the news it does makes sense if they are the most professional in the force, platform is uniformly Russian based with some mix of Israeli weapons systems and integrations, with the exception of submarine delays, the navy is looking good
by far the biggest acquisition budget goes to the airforce, they get almost double than what the Navy and Airforce get

but it wasnt always like this, historically they allocated most of the money to the army, as any war would always be based on a spearheading armoured thrust into Pakistan

the navy came last and still does, if u look at the Indian army u will see they are totally massive, but it changed after 1983, the reason was because Pakistan Air Force took delivery of the American F16 Fighting Falcon, 40 aircraft to be precise

people at the time were over the moon, in 1983 for the first time in Pakistan people came to see this new frontline fighter which no one had ever heard of, it was a glimming example of fine American engineering

it was May 1986 over the snow capped mountains of Parachinar that PAFs F16 scored it first aerial kill, downing 2 Su22 in a single sortie

it is called the high point of PAF and its sent shock waves throughout the Indian military establishment, so serve was the F16 threat that the IAF went on a spending spree, bringing in 49 Mirages 2000 from France and Sqaudrons upon Sqaudron of Mig29s

in 1986 when Pakistanis pilots switched from patroling Soviets out of Pakistan to actually shooting them down using very aggressive tatics India then switched to fully supporting its airforce and knew without a strong airforce it will not be able to suceed in a air war

today India fields more than 140 Su30 MKI, production is on going and the deal has cost more than $13 billion since 1997!!!
 

Indianfighter

Junior Member
I'll just post some updates in case members have missed them :

1) Arjun tank has been accepted by the Army after it beat the Russian T-90 in trials (Source :
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Per wiki : 3 regiment of 50 tanks in service, total 496 (248 Mk-I, 248 Mk-II) tanks ordered.

2) After the success of Arjun Mark-1, the next version shall enter trials (
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3) The Army commands a lion's share of the yearly budget or 46%. The remaining is divided between the Navy and Air Force.

4) 3,000 Akash SAM missiles are being inducted, as well as a light torpedo (Source : Wiki for Akash and
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). Akash SAMs will be lined up along Tibet border and Pakistan border.

5) Arihant, the nuclear powered sub shall begin ops in a few months' time (google it). It can fire a nuclear tipped ballistic missile, the K-15 or range 750 kms. K-15 has been tested already from shore facilities.

6) Indigenous Ballistic Missile Defence (Endo and Exo-atmospheric like Arrow + THAAD) shall be deployed in major Indian cities (
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7) IRBM version of Agni has been tested. It can strike the eastern-most cities of China from deep within India.

8) Agni-V, the ICBM version is in the throes of testing.

9) So far, only the LCA (air-force and navy) remain to be completed. All other projects have not only been completed, but inducted also.
 
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paintgun

Senior Member
Indianfighter, thank you for that summary, will be quite helpful for those who don't follow the recent news

how about the AF procurement present-2020ish, here is what i gather from recollection :

- MKIs around 190, with more to come, do you have planned total production numbers or end date?
- Mig-29-K/UBs for the carriers, 2 squadrons?
- Mig-29UPG, number escapes me, 4 squadrons?
- Rafales, 128, with more options
- Mirage upgrade
- LCAs Mk II and Mk. II, also naval variants
- AMCA?
- PAK FAs, 300 total
- Pilatus trainers

retiring birds after 2020:

- Mig-21 and variants, 2014
- Jaguars
- Mig-23s and Mig-27s

i remember there is a very nice graph of Indian AF force structure at Keypub, wish someone can pull it here

---------- Post added at 02:08 AM ---------- Previous post was at 01:58 AM ----------

It's hard to gauge just how "capable" the navy is, even if it's judging equipment, time spent at sea etc. remember the reddit firestorm last year with the supposed USN officer who was aboard the INS delhi?

Personally I think the three branches of the Indian military are more or less equal in standing, although the navy does have a more conformal force, with most ships having russian origins. A problem with the IN is that it takes Indian shipyards quite a while to get out vessels. The first kolkata class DDG was laid down in late 2003, with the third/last to come into service at early 2014. (comparing with PLA only out of familiarity, compare with USN works too) From 2009 being "laid down"/modules built, to 2014, all six of the second batch of 052C+s are expected to come into service. That's twice as many ships in less than half the time.
didn't some Indian service member clarify that it's a hoax at WAB?
i too think it's 'too much' for a story, not properly maintained perhaps, undisciplined maybe, but the story was absolutely terrible in it's portrayal of the ship's conditions

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maybe because integrating different platforms and weapon systems is time consuming especially ones that are non-indigenous, you can imagine the ping pong play between the forces, the shipyard, and the foreign suppliers

have to say Indian Navy's surface combatants is pretty well decked (kinda touching the CDF discussion on this same subject), also i think although they are pumping less vessel than PLAN shipyards can, the numbers (and future planned) seems sufficient to defend the IOR

kinda curious about their naval aviation branch and carrier aviation capabilities, since it is a rare subject discussed in the Indian forums


by far the biggest acquisition budget goes to the airforce, they get almost double than what the Navy and Airforce get
as evidently from the procurement programs, the Mirage upgrade is especially mind boogling, both in cost and schedule
 

plawolf

Brigadier
It's hard to gauge just how "capable" the navy is, even if it's judging equipment, time spent at sea etc. remember the reddit firestorm last year with the supposed USN officer who was aboard the INS delhi?

Personally I think the three branches of the Indian military are more or less equal in standing, although the navy does have a more conformal force, with most ships having russian origins. A problem with the IN is that it takes Indian shipyards quite a while to get out vessels. The first kolkata class DDG was laid down in late 2003, with the third/last to come into service at early 2014. (comparing with PLA only out of familiarity, compare with USN works too) From 2009 being "laid down"/modules built, to 2014, all six of the second batch of 052C+s are expected to come into service. That's twice as many ships in less than half the time.
The original Reddit transcripts.

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Pretty damning stuff. So no, I would not say the navy is India's most professional force. That title should go to the air force. The Americans complimented them on their professionalism when they visited red flag with the MKIs and Bisons.

------------------
Edit: Humm, the forum doesn't seem to like the link and stars out some of the address. Here is what the link shows. Makes easier reading than the Reddit original.

Here is an interesting AMA from a US Naval Officer who spent 5 days on Indian Navy warship, INS Delhi. AMA means AskMeAnything where a person is asked questions which he answers.

IAmA US Naval Officer who spent 5 days onboard an Indian Navy warship, INS Delhi. AMA. : IAmA

I am posting questions and answers below. The US Navy officer is anonymous.

I see a lot of disappointments/shock in your comments. Were there any positives? Did they have good food?
Actually, their food was excellent. They also made really good tea, too. I drank nothing but hot milk tea my entire 5 days there because I was afraid of drinking the water (I saw their reverse osmosis units, dear god).

How bad was it?
15+ years old and they looked like nobody had done any maintenance in the last 5+ years. Their ROs were in such poor shape that despite having a greater fresh water production capacity than my ship by several thousand gallons, they were still on water hours.

How do they runs things differently then the USN?
Their engineering practices were abysmal. No undershirts, no steel-toed boots - they wore sandals - no hearing protection in their engineering spaces. No lagging (sound dampening material) in any space. No electrical safety whatsoever. No operational risk management. No concept of safety of navigation. Absolutely did not adhere to rules of the road. They more or less did not have any hard-copy written procedures for any exercise or event, at all. They had no concept of the coded fleet tactical system that US coalition forces and allies utilize (they literally made it up as they went along, and when I tried to interject and explain to them how it worked, they ignored me). When I arrived onboard they thought I was a midshipman and treated me as such. I had to be frank and explain that I was a commissioned officer and that yes, I stood officer on the deck onboard my ship and was a qualified surface warfare officer. They don't entrust their people with any responsibility until they are very senior Lieutenants (O-3s) and junior Lieutenant Commanders (O-4s). At this point in the US Navy there are literally guys commanding ships, and these guys couldn't even be trusted to handle a radio circuit.

How knowledgeable did you find the officers to be?
Well, their captain was driving the ship when it came within 50ft of the stern of a USNS replenishment ship and at any given time there were multiple officers on the bridge screaming at each other. They were generally clueless and had almost zero seamanship skills. I found their enlisted guys to be far more competent than their officers on the bridge.

Why do you think they're so incompetent and have such crappy operations?
Well, coming within 50ft of another ship at sea is never a good sign. But, afterwards, the general consensus/excuse that they came up with during their mini-debrief was "oh well, rough seas, better luck next time" not "holy ******* ****, we parted a tensioned wire cable made of braided steel under hundreds of thousands of pounds of tension".
And wearing sandals during replenishment/helo ops/boat ops/in engineering spaces pretty much says it all. They legitimately didn't understand why I was wearing steel-toed flight deck boots.
Things like these aren't cultural differences, they are golden exhibitions of their sheer lack of common sense and seamanship.

1. Are you breaking any US Navy rules by telling us all this?
2. How did they do in the exercise? Did they get "sunk" five times or what?
3. Were there equivalent Indian Navy personnel on a US Navy ship and do you happen to know their assessment? Were they disappointed by the lack of slaves?
4. Let's say **** hits the fan. India and Pakistan (or any other country. Take your pick) are at war and the ship you were on is sent into action. Would they be an effective fighting force or are they on the bottom of the ocean before the first day of shooting?
Great AMA btw!
1. I'm not breaking any rules in telling you this.
2. It wasn't a wargame-type exercise. It was basically one big five-day photo op.
3. I only have second-hand information about the Indian equivalent that came onboard my ship, but from what I understand he was impressed by the cleanliness of the ship and amazed that we had hot running water all day...
4. Truthfully - bottom of the ocean. I would be surprised if most of their gear worked. The stuff I saw (I got a pretty extensive tour) looked like it fell straight out of the 60s and 70s and I would be genuinely flabbergasted if they got any rounds off. They could barely avoid hitting other ships in the middle of the Pacific, I doubt they'd be popping off any rounds with any amount of accuracy.

I read 'Indian Navy' and I immediately pictured a ridiculously crowded boat, with everyone living(?) in squalor. Is that at all the case?
Actually, yes. Before I came onboard I was told to bring my own roll of toilet paper, if that alludes to the conditions that they live in at all. There was actually toilet paper aboard their ship. It was thinner than one-ply, if that's possible. I might as well have been wiping my *** with my bare hand.

After a particularly wet small boat ride over to their ship, I was dying to get out of my sea water-drenched uniform and into a fresh one (unfortunately, my entire bag was completely soaked to include my shirts, underwear, spare uniform, phone, camera, and my roll of toilet paper)...
I walked into their "officer's head" (their are extremely, extremely hierarchical and classist, even from a military standpoint) and there was a good 2" of ****-water sloshing around back and forth across the deck and an obscure, probably live wire with it's end wrapped in electrical tape non-surreptitiously protruding from the wall.
They have an entire "class" of civilians onboard. I still don't know what to make of them. I think they were some sort of cheap labor, but everybody onboard referred to them as slaves. As in, they used the word "slave". Anyways, the quarters those guys lived in was awful, it was basically a big open space partitioned with a sheet. They slept on a steel deck with a simple blanket and a pillow. Good times.
Their enlisted guys didn't have it much better. Their berthing was infested with rats (a guy from my ship swore up and down that he saw a rat that was no-**** the length of his arm) and another US sailor from another ship came back covered in bed-bug sores. Dude looked like he had ******* chicken pocks.

Awesome AMA so far. I'm former US navy as well, so I can appreciate your shock and dismay at their abysmal practices.
1. What was your single biggest 'are you ******* kidding me' moment?
2. What was your biggest priority when you got back to your ship?
3. At any point did you consider trying to assume OOD for your own safety?
4. Will anyone important listen to your assessment of their battle-readiness?
Thanks in advance!
1. Have you ever seen a US ship do an unrep at sea? When we pull along side and shoot the shotline across (basically a thick piece of yarn for those who don't know) there's a nice soft tennis ball affixed to the end of it so that it'll bounce of the deck and someone can go retrieve it... the Indians shot a spear. A motherfucking spear. Like, a 16" long piece of metal with a point on the end....

2. Biggest priority was showering. I hadn't showered properly in almost 5 days, and all of my uniforms reeked of seawater.

3. I wouldn't dare try and assume the deck like that. Even on a US ship that would be extremely, extremely out of line. On a foreign Navy ship? **** it, I can swim... Honestly though, when they passed under (50 feet from) the replenishment ship, I was generally afraid they were going to collide. 50ft at sea is extremely, extremely close. I had to leave the bridge after that ****, I just couldn't stomach it anymore.

4. And yes, I wrote up a full-debrief afterwards that was read by my CO/XO and presumably ISIC.

On an arbitrary scale from 1-10, 1 being full retard and ten being space marine quality training and efficiency, how would you rate their sailors quality?
3, at best. They had some marginally competent folks, but for every one person who was half-competent, there were 4 other guys just standing around looking clueless.

Why do you think this is? Are those guys not trained? Are their ships "overstaffed"?
I have staff in India and find that there is a tendency to do nothing when they are unsure of something, instead of coming to me and asking for an explanation.
They were great at doing the same things over and over again, but when I simply asked for an outcome and expected them to figure out HOW to do it, they were stumped.
Well, considering how undermanned US ships are at the moment (our CRUDES - crusiers/destroyers) are, on average, missing about 20-30 people give or take - destroyers more so.... I would say that it's a fault in their training, because they have more than enough people running around not doing anything of particular use.
And I agree. These guys were having issues breaking/generating a fairly widely used NATO standard fleet tactical code system that we use among allied nations and I was trying (in vain) to show them how to say what they wanted to say. I literally wrote out word for word what they needed to pass over the rt circuit and they still refused to believe that I was correct...and continued passing incomprehensible gibberish over the airwaves..

NROTC Midshipman here. I didn't know CRUDES were undermanned – why is that? Also, what rank are you? Ship? How do I not suck as an officer?
CRUDES are very undermanned. USS LASTSHIP (flight I DDG) was at 262 when I left. The ships were built for about 315. Cruisers weren't quite as bad, but they're still lacking people as well.
I'm a LTJG. Won't tell you what ship I was on, just know that it's a DDG out of Yoko.
As for how to not suck as an officer? LISTEN TO YOUR CHIEF, YOUR FIRST CLASS, AND YOUR ****-HOT SECOND CLASSES. Always trust your people until they give you a reason not to.

Thanks for the AMA. Did you or any other USNS staff point out these obvious failings to your counterparts? Or was it all just for show and you were basically told to endure.
Oh, the USNS released a full sitrep (situation report) afterwards. And I absolutely told my chain of command about all of this stuff. There is a very specific process that we go through upon returning from any foreign Navy ship. Basically, we sit down and chronicle our entire experience.

Do you think the Indian navy will take any of this advice to heart? DO they actually want to improve? Or will they just brush it off or even be offended that you are insulting their capabilities?
The latter. They pretty much wrote off every piece of advice that I humbly gave them in my time onboard.

Were there sensitive areas onboard the Indian ship you weren't allowed to enter? And vice versa, were the Indian exchange officers allowed to see the US ships in their entirety?
I saw some, but not all of their fire control spaces. I saw their "ops room" - basically their version of the Combat Information Center. However, I would guarantee that I didn't see everything that there was to see.
And no Ally really truly ever sees every space on a US ship. There are spaces on our ships that even 99% of the ships crew isn't allowed to see. And that's all I have to say about that.

What is your opinion about their war capability?
Truthfully, after touring their ship extensively I would be very much surprised if the majority of their armament even successfully fired, let along hit anything.

How much of the poor conditions do you think can be attributed to poor funding/resources as opposed to the service not giving a ****?
90% of it was the service not giving a ****. Their wardroom (where the officers ate/hung out) was EXTREMELY nice, clean, well-decorated, had a fully-stocked bar with and nice oil pantings and other contemporary decor...but the rest of the ship was a complete and utter pigsty.

As a sailor....I'm so sorry sir! How the **** did you end up with such shitty orders though?
I bet a deployment on a big deck is looking mighty fine after this!
It's all good. I enjoyed 7th Fleet and my time on a FDNF DDG taught me a LOT. I'm not a SWO anymore (I lat transferred to IP - part of the IDC community) but I grew a lot as a person, and professionally, out in Yoko... I actually chose to go out there. I'd love to go back for shore duty, but I'd never go back to 7th Fleet for sea duty, ever.

That's a lot of acronyms. Any help for us rookies?
FDNF - Forward Deployed Naval Forces - this is how we refer to the US Navy's 7th Fleet, stationed in Yokosuka, Japan, because they are permanently forward deployed outside of the US.
DDG - The hull code for the kind of ship I was on - an Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer.
SWO - Surface Warfare Officer - what I used to be.
IP - Information Professional - what I am now (basically network security/networking management).

How did the Indian officers visiting U.S. ships react?
From what I remember, they sent a Chief Petty Officer (E-7) equivalent over to our ship, an engineering type. From what everybody back on my ship told me (after I got back, of course), they guy walked through our ship and engineering spaces and was amazed at how clean everything was and, ironically, that we had hot running water all day.

How good was the curry?
Pretty much all of their food was really good, but then again, I'm a big fan of Indian cuisine. They were all actually pretty surprised that I readily ate whatever they put in front of me. I ate the **** out of whatever they served my entire time there.

How did you wind up being on board the ship? How were you rescued?
Well, I wasn't stranded or anything, so there wasn't a "rescue" per se. Basically, whenever the US does any sort of multi-naval exercise with other nations, it is pretty common that we exchange a few people from each ship as sort of a naval-cultural exchange. In this case, I was sent from a US Navy destroyer based out of Japan to the INS Delhi - the Indian Navy's flagship as part of an exercise that took place last March.
As for how I got there, we did a fairly massive passenger exchange that consisted of about 5-6 ships pulling up in basically a big circle within about 500 yards of one another and then we all dropped our small boats in the water, exchanges passengers, and that was that. It was a particularly choppy day at sea and most of us were sufficiently soaked.

Holy crap, that was their FLAGSHIP?
They had a 2-star admiral embarked...lol.

I know nada about the Indian navy, but I thought their armed forces were pretty professional. Can you prove your identity?
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Describe some of the smells?
The ship generally smelled "old". I dunno if you have every been on a ship - namely a warship - before, but this one smelled like it was ******* from the inside out. Rust, decaying paint, dirty spaces, mechanical fumes...it generally smelled musty, I guess is the best way to describe it. Imagine if you farted in a vacuum and then immediately sealed the door, and then you opened said door 10 years later...that's what their ship smelled like pretty consistently.
 
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escobar

Brigadier
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The Indian Navy will purchase six to eight Northrop Grumman MQ-4C BAMS (Broad Area Maritime Surveillance) for high-altitude reconnaissance. The aircraft is an upgrade of the Northrop Grumman heavy drone Global Hawk.

The project aims to keep a BAMS airborne all day for 365 days a year. These particular UAVs will allow India to patrol the Arabian Sea, the Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal joining the Boeing P-8A Poseidon fleet.

Delhi is improving its UAV fleet, having already two Israel-made Heron drone squadron.

---------- Post added at 02:37 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:31 PM ----------

If it is true, it will boost IN surveillance capability in the indian ocean.
 

delft

Brigadier
I understood that one of the objections against the Arjun tank was that it weighted more than sixty tons and so was too heavy for many bridges and to be airlifted. Arjun Mk I has now come out at 62 tons, Mk II 3 or 4 tons heavier according to the article in Business Standard. Have those ten thousand (?) bridges now been reinforced?
 

paintgun

Senior Member
I understood that one of the objections against the Arjun tank was that it weighted more than sixty tons and so was too heavy for many bridges and to be airlifted. Arjun Mk I has now come out at 62 tons, Mk II 3 or 4 tons heavier according to the article in Business Standard. Have those ten thousand (?) bridges now been reinforced?
hardly any i guess

those objections against the Arjun are just political talk to cover the brib.. ahem! lobby from the Russian :p

and then they are having troubles producing the Bishmas
 

asif iqbal

Brigadier
there is only one aircraft that can lift Arjun, that is C17 Globemaster

india bought 10 x C17 for $4.1 billion, some say the price could reach almost $ 6 billion, if the opition for 6 more is taken then the price will go up even further

for only 16 cargo planes, thats a hell of a price tag, i mean we are talking more than $ 500 million per plane

You can see China making its own Y-20 and Chinese armed forces will be able to order as many as they like
 

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