NEW DELHI, July 7 (UPI) -- The Indian government said Wednesday it will take delivery of 24 British-made Hawk Advanced Jet Trainers in February 2008.
Defense Minister Pranab Mukherjee told the Rajya Sabha, or upper house of parliament, 75 Indian air force pilots will train in Britain for the AJTs in the next 3 1/2 years. He said 24 of 66 AJTs will be delivered by February 2008. The rest will be delivered between March 2008 and May 2010.
The $1.4 billion deal will help India overhaul its aging fleet of Soviet-era MiG fighters.
In other defense-related news, Russia's state-run Rosoboronexport, a top arms exporter, said it would set up an India-based joint venture with the Bombay-based Krasny Marine Services Pvt. Ltd. to retrofit naval ships and submarines from around the world.