Indian Army orders more Akash missiles from BDL

Bharat Dynamics Ltd, the prime production agency under India’s Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP), said it received top-up orders worth Rs 499 cr for the supply of Akash missiles to the Indian Army.

Bharat Dynamics Ltd had got a mega contract worth for Rs 14,000 cr for Aakash missiles in March 2018.

In September 2019, fellow PSU Bharat Electronics had got a contract to supply the electronics components of the Akash Missile System worth Rs 5,357 cr.

BDL is the prime agency for the production of the missile, while BEL and others manufacture electronic items such as the surveillance and fire control radar, the control and command center and the missile launcher.

Akash is one of the missiles under IGMDP being manufactured by BDL and is supplied to both Indian Army and Indian Air Force.

“The Missile has been successfully test fired on several occasions and is regarded as one of the best missiles in its category,” it claimed.

BDL also manufactures Anti-Tank Guided Missiles, Air to Air Missiles, Air to Surface Weapons, Launchers, Test Equipment, Underwater weapons and Counter Measure Systems.

In March this year, BDL had announced a Rs 1,188 cr deal to supply around 4,700 anti-tank guided missiles to the Indian Army. Last financial year also saw the company ink another Surface to Air Missiles contract worth Rs 793 cr too.

In all, the company got new orders worth 2,803 cr during the year ended March 2021, it said today. With the latest order, said the company, it has around Rs 8,683 cr worth of orders on its book yet to be carried out.

The company also said it is exploring the possibility of exporting these missiles to foreign countries, given that the central government recently gave the go-ahead to exports of Akash missiles.

“The Company is also aiming to expand its footprints in the international market by offering Air to Air Missiles, Anti-Tank Guided missiles, underwater weapons and Counter Measure Systems in addition to Akash Missiles to friendly countries,” it said.

The Akash missile system can target aircraft up to 50–80 km away at altitudes up to 18,000 and can take on fighter jets, cruise missiles and air-to-surface missiles as well as ballistic missiles.

The missile has a launch weight of 720 kg, a diametre of 35 cm and a length of 5.78 metres. It flies at around Mach 2.5 and can reach an altitude of 18 km and can be fired from both tracked and wheeled platforms.