It’s Final: #MMRCA Dead, Rafales Coming

After a decade of speculation, intrigue, a generous measure of behind-the-scenes drama, finally some ironic clarity on the ‘mother of all deals’, India’s massive combat jet acquisition effort, the M-MRCA. After committing to purchase 36 flyaway Rafales from Dassault last week, the Indian government today made it supremely clear that the M-MRCA process is effectively dead after careening earthward in a death spiral for over three years.

In a series of tweets today, MoD spokesperson Sitanshu Kar quoted Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on the MMRCA:

Interestingly, Parrikar has also said “future Rafale deals will also be government to government“, a seeming contradiction of the India-France joint statement last week that spoke of the separate MMRCA process.

22 thoughts on “It’s Final: #MMRCA Dead, Rafales Coming”

  1. Ok. The current process(RPF, user trials etc) is dead. But tht process did throw up d machine which IAF wanted, which the Govt purchased (36 for now). Now if we get more of these on terms agreeable to both sides, in the numbers we require, at cost favourable to us & in a definite time frame, with whatever spin off benefit comes with it, it shud be ok. Isn't it?

  2. What particular benefit does the country derive if the Rafales were assembled by HAL.The answer is not much.HAL has been assembling Migs and Sukhois for decades without any spinoffs for indigenisation.Buying off the shelf saves time and money.HAL should stick to Tejas programme.

  3. NSR says —

    India must get exactly same models that are being delivered to French Air Force, F3.3, of course minus nuclear interface…

    So future upgrades can follow exactly of what France is doing with their fighters…

    This would be important as we are paying almost $45 millions/plane for Mirage-2000 upgrade and it does not include an engine or AESA radar, etc

    I hope that Dassault realizes that partnering with India is a win-win opportunity for France and India…and comes through by establishing private company sub assembly offsets so future Rafale orders can be easily won and technology is transferred…

    If they do not come forward in good faith, then buy another 36 Rafales to address pressing numbers and air defence/superiority/attack capabilities…

    And then may be go with SU-35S plane and S-400 missile system…

    Buy some T-50's instead of waiting for a decade for FGFA…If it is real good, then buy some more outrightly from Russia…Do not go through FGFA route at all…

    Whatever happens, India must get total TOT and MOT for SU-30MKI, Mig-29K, and Mig-29UPG so that they will not fall off from the skies anymore…Pay money for Intellectual Property and do joint programs in engines and avionics to make sure that they run forever…

    To maintain the force levels —
    Re-engine Jaguar and do block upgrades…

    Order some more Tejas I and Naval Tejas so India will learn R&D, D&D, manufacturing, block upgrades, etc…

    Go on war footing to develop Tejas II and AMCA…

    I think this is sensible plan for India to get out of these difficult situations / times…

    Somehow Indian procurement policies are extremely negative and impacting the defense of India…

  4. G2G route will not serve Modiji make in India program. Why government would adopt and contradict itself. Speaking of FGFA India wants it quickly from the Russians.





    Let's abandon the PAK-FA. Let's build the AMCA.

  6. Seen the outcome of this crazy procurement process, but something not clear is still in my mind.
    Rafale was selected on the basis of being L1, so less costly than the Eurofighter, but not because it was better performing.
    We have seen that the reality of rafale being less costly than Eurofighter was not true (4 billion euro for 36 Rafale) and that the price proposed by the French when they submitted the tender was a marketing game that didn't work (I cannot understand why India still have relation with France after this unfair trick. At the end, if India lost more than 3 years is because French tried to adapt the tender rules to their interests).
    My question is: OK, India have now decided that for strategic deals better to go G2G, but why selecting the Rafale when the Eurofighter is a much better option in terms of performances and the only one that can claim to be clearly superior to Chinese Su-30 etc.?

    1. Why do you say the Eurofighter is better? You may not have noticed but in Libya the fact that the Eurofighter dropped a bomb was made out to be a big deal.
      No trace of it being used either in Irak or Syria but rather the Tornado that was to be pulled out. It doesn't have an Aesa radar with partners only deciding to finance an aesa radar couple of months ago

  7. Its not a bad thing. Like some have said, now is the time to put the money where the mouth is. Let's see what local Indian talent can deliver on tejas mk1 and 2 and amca. Set time frames and let heads roll if deadlines are not met.

    This government has a better thought process than the previous one. Their decision should be backed and trusted as no one has smelt or seen a rat.

  8. This is a bad move, if HAL is not involved then no technology transfer is involved at all. Bharat will spend billions and get no technology of any type whatsoever.

    For such a price tag, this is too much money. Better to cancel the deal and put the money in the AMCA, Tejas, DRDO Aura and other indigenous efforts, which will at least bring an end to the days of importing aircraft.

  9. As I predicted when I heard the deal on 36 Rafales, M-MRCA is dead. Dassault will have no incentives whatsoever to support localization. Now I am unsure even that deal for 36 Rafales will even go through. Recall the key phrase "assuming price and terms are better" (than M-MRCA, not mentioned directly in the joint statement). Will price be lower, we shall see but I will not bet on it. After all, what do you do with 36 planes of 1 type? it is just a headache to support 36.

  10. “The credibility of India (as an arms buyer) is already pretty shaky and it’s going to get shakier (if they cancel the Rafale deal),” said Rahul Bedi, a defence analyst at IHS Jane’s.

  11. " Why do you say the Eurofighter is better?…."
    8:19 PM

    Eurofighter had topped the performance charts after IAF evaluated all the 6 planes in MRCA competition. It was rated ahead of Rafale by the IAF. It lost the bid because of price.

  12. Dear Mahendra Singh, can you please show the IAF evaluations results you are talking about ? I was told that the Rafale was equal to Typhoon in air combat, but it was better in ground attack. Also cheaper for maintainance. The factual element is that the IAF choose the Rafale.

  13. Few have mentioned M-MRCA and Rafale cannot replace on a 1 to 1 basis the MIG21. The issue is cost and affordability. If it cannot replace on a 1 to 1 basis, then the squadron strength of IAF will decrease substantially. Those are conflicting goals. The MIG21 is a light weight interceptor, the Rafale is not, neither are the Typhoon, Super Hornet, MIG35, Gripen NG or F16 block 60.
    If IAF wants to maintain squadron strength, then a light weight fighter must be chosen, like the original Gripen (not the NG), the F16 block 20 and Tejas? A key requirement is lowest cost, both initial and operating costs. That is the only way for a 1 to 1 replacement.

    1. The advantage is the Rafale is a truly multi role aircraft which in the French air forces has already replaced multiple types of aircraft such as Jaguar, Mirage F1, Mirage IlI, Corsair and Etendard. The capability is such that you need not replace on a one yo one basis. Besided Su30 have an air superiority role principally.

  14. Why is every one interested in Spinoffs, TOT , Make in India , Swatch Bharat etc when it comes to armament . Our desire is to get our pilots the best fighters after best training and in best numbers as they repeat they are putting their lives and defending this nation . Why not ask our pilots about their views and not armchair aces or presstitutes who are hyper about every good that happens to our armed forces . 36 is too low a number and after its induction is over let us aim for at least 10 squads. with nuclear capabilities also . Pakis and Chinks should be told that Indian armed forces are back in business.Jaihind .

  15. Is clear to me, the new India' s government loose it's patient with his own company HAL. The great defeat of M-MRCA was for HAL.
    The Modi government has decided HAL don't have the physical and tech capacity to carry Tejas, Sukoi NAD Rafale projects at the same time.
    HAL now must FOCUS in Tejas and SU-30 MKI and get results FAST.
    IF the PAKFA deleys, HAL could challenge future Rafale buys offering SU-35S alternative with his Sukhoi partner…

  16. Dear friends,
    This rafel deal is done to save …the french firm from getting bankrupt…….see qatar andvegypt r forced to buy this shit……
    Rather than buying ….1300 crore priced rafael per piece……36…..
    India can purchase 72 sukhoi su 35….. at a rate of 700 crore per pice…….
    We can also fund …..AMCA…and speed up its prototype in such a way that its manufacured 100% in india itself…..
    Aircrafts can be easilr detected by radars……butnuclear submarines are the once that cannot be detectex easily……

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top