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Indian Army Greenlights Local VSHORAD Development Project

The Indian Army has reportedly contracted two local firms to develop a Very Short Range Air Defence (VSHORAD) system prototype.

The potentially 4,800 crore Indian rupees ($580 million) project includes the production of 200 launchers and 1,200 missiles by a Hyderabad-based public sector company and a Pune-based private firm, Asian News International revealed, citing sources.

A majority of the launchers would go to the Indian Army and a smaller number to the Indian Air Force, the outlet added. Similarly, the army would receive 700 missiles and the air force the remaining 500.

Another VSHORAD Project

In parallel, India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation is working on a VSHORAD project with Indian private sector partners Adani Defence and I-Comm.

The laser-guided system has already been tested on a tripod and efforts are underway to miniaturize it into a shoulder-fired weapon, according to Asian News International. 

A total of 500 indigenous VSHORAD launchers and 3,000 missiles are expected to be procured by the Indian Army in the coming years, according to the outlet.

To Replace Russian Igla

The projects intend to replace the over three-decade-old Russian Igla-M man portable air defense system, which completed its service life in 2013.

India is also considering reviving a scrapped project to procure a large number of Igla’s latest variant, the Igla-S.

The army and air force bought 96 of the Igla-S as an emergency measure in 2020 to plug a critical capability gap.

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