Rafale to enter Indian service in 2017: Air Force Chief
The Chief of Air Staff of the Indian Air Force, N.A.K. Browne said the Rafale are expected to be inducted into the force by 2017, three years approximately after the contract is signed. The Indian Air Force is negotiating with French aviation major Dassault Aviation’s Rafale for 126 medium fighter jets in a multibillion dollar deal.
The deal suffered a “set back” due to the death of an official, who handled the negotiation, in September. Now a new Joint Secretary has joined last week to take the negotiations forward, Browne told reporters here.
“They have had meetings as of this time and I am hopeful that by early next year we should be able to wrap this case for the Air Force,” Browne said.
According to the request for proposal (RFP) of the IAF, 18 aircraft will be brought in the next three years while the remaining aircraft is likely to be manufactured at HAL facilities at Bengaluru, defence sources said.