The Indian government on Tuesday said that 18 more Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas in IOC (Initial Operation Clearance) standard are planned for induction by 2018-19.
In a written reply to Parliamant on Tuesday, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said this would be followed by 20 more aircraft in Final Operation Configuration (FOC) standard, which are planned for induction from year 2019.
The first LCA Tejas squadron was formed on 1st July, 2016 with two LCA Initial Operation Configuration (IOC) Series Production Aircraft.
The total expenditure incurred on development of Tejas LCA Mk-I aircraft, as on June 30 is Rs 8042.46 crore, Parrikar said. The total initial sanctioned cost for Full Scale Engineering Development (FSED) for LCA was Rs 5489.78 crore which was later escalated to Rs 9121.07 crore.
The indigenous content of LCA is about 70 per cent and import content is about 30 per cent. The aircraft is indigenously designed and developed and the technology for production of this aircraft is available in the country.
LCA Tejas shall be an important part of the Indian Air Force’s fighter aircraft inventory filling up the lightweight category of fighters and shall be effectively used for air defence and for battlefield air strikes, Parrikar added.
LCA Tejas is a single seat, single engine multi-role light fighter aircraft developed indigenously by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). It has the fly by wire, state of the art open architecture computer for avionics and better weapon and combat capability.