According to reports from the Indian media, the government has given approval for the purchase of 15 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from Israel in order to boost the country’s surveillance abilities.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh headed the Cabinet committee on security which approved the procurement proposal expected to cost the government around Rs 1,200 crores.
The Indian fleet already includes several such vehicles, including the Isreali Herons and Searchers, which are deployed on the western, northern and eastern borders. Reportedly the IAF utilizes around 100 Searchers for surveillance and most of these vehicles are expected to be upgraded in the near future. The upgrades will allow these vehicles to be operated from long range and controlled using satellite systems.
Apart from the Indian Air Force, the Indian Army also has UAVs, being the first to procure them back in the 90s. The Northern Command had also issued a tender recently for UAVs in order to carry out surveillance on borders along Pakistan and China.
The Indian Navy also has Israeli UAVs operational across their eastern and western seaboards for surveillance.
UAVs have increasingly been used by developed countries to carry out surveillance without having to send out pilots and risking lives. Modern UAVs can operate from as high as 30,000 feet, making them extremely effective and efficient.
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