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More surveillance aircraft needed: Navy chief

August 12, 2003 15:37 IST

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Madhvendra Singh on Tuesday stressed the need for induction of more long-range maritime surveillance capability aircraft in the Indian Navy.

"India has 13 such aircraft but we need more... may be 30," Singh told reporters on board INS Talwar, the first of the guided missile frigates being inducted in the Indian Navy.

The navy chief was responding to queries whether India was seeking P-3 Orion, a land-based, long-range anti-submarine warfare patrol aircraft from the US.

"Talks are on between the two governments but we are interested in getting more surveillance capability," he said.

Asked about indigenous Air Defence Ship (ADS), Singh said its production is likely to start next year at Kochi Shipyard and it would be fully ready by 2012.

To a query on induction of Admiral Gorshkov, Singh said, "We are trying to get it. It will be a major addition to our fleet,"

"Negotiations between the two governments (Russian and Indian) are progressing well," he added.

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