NEW DELHI, Oct. 27 (UPI) -- India's military plans to spend more than $1 billion to build six submarines indigenously and procure thousands of Israeli-made anti-tank missiles.
The decisions are part of a larger $13 billion program to boost national security, and were announced late last week following a meeting of the Defense Acquisition Council, which is chaired by Defense Minister Arun Jaitley.
The six submarines, which would cost an estimated $800 million, would feature air independent propulsion, allowing them to stay under water longer than submarines using classic diesel/electric propulsion systems. They will also be capable of carrying cruise missiles.
The Press Trust of India quoted unidentified official sources as saying a committee formed by the Ministry of Defense is to study shipyards in the country before the end of this year to identify shipbuilding capacity and manpower, after which a request for proposal will be issued.
India currently has an operational fleet of 13 submarines. They were either made in Germany or the former Soviet Union. It has also ordered six submarines from France.
The DAC, which includes the chiefs India's three services, earmarked about $525 million for procurement of more than 8,000 man-portable, fire-and-forget missiles and 321 missile launchers.
The Spike was developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems. Procurement details were not disclosed.
Among other programs approved by the DAC: the purchase of upgraded Dornier surveillance aircraft from Hindustan Aeronautics and procurement of more than 300 Indian-made infantry fighting vehicles.