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India turns to cannibalism for Mirage fleet

22nd September 2021 - 01:04 GMT | by Gordon Arthur, Neelam Mathews in Christchurch and Delhi


India’s upgrade of its Mirage fleet has been going slowly, hampered by a lack of spare parts. (Gordon Arthur)

A deal for ex-French Mirages might help India keep its Mirage 2000 fighters aloft, but the move has left many analysts scratching their heads.

The Indian MoD’s decision to buy 24 phased-out Mirage 2000s of the French Air Force from Dassault Aviation, for a nominal sum of €1.12 million each, has stumped many in the industry.

With the Indian Air Force (IAF) upgrading its three-decade-old fleet to Mirage 2000-5 status, lifecycle costs and support systems were not considered by the MoD, an analyst told Shephard.

Air Marshal (Retired) M. Matheswaran, former Deputy Chief of the Integrated Defence Staff, told Shephard, ‘This decision has come as a surprise to me. At this cost, it seems to be meant primarily for cannibalisation. It will …

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