The Indian Army is making major procurements of Anti Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM) from its own public sector and other nations as well. Apart from awarding Rafael from Israel a $ 1 billion worth of deal for Spike ATGM, Indian Army is also looking at Javelin ATGM from the U.S and will be acquiring Nag ATGM developed by state-run Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
While the contract for Spike ATGM, which is a third generation missile that will be mounted on the BMP-2 infantry combat vehicle, has been awarded to Rafael of Israel, the contract for buying man-held Javelin ATGM, to be used by Indian Army troops, is still in the final stages and not signed. The latter will be a government to government deal.
The procurement of the Spike system from Israel by the Indian Army will include missile launchers, missiles and training simulators. The Spike ATGM will be delivered to the India Army fully formed, then semi-formed and then license produced in India for the future. The Spike will be mounted on the BMP-2 infantry vehicle and will have a range of over 2.5 kilometers. It will have a third generation guidance systems with active/passive guidance system with fire and forget and top attack capability.
The Indian Army had been looking for an advanced ATGM for the BMP-2 infantry vehicle and the hunting saga for the ATGM began in 2006. In 2010, tenders were sent again and it was almost on the verge of cancellation since only one company was left which was Rafael of Israel as it agreed to transfer the technology of the ATGM. The other firms to whom tenders were sent included MBDA of France, Raytheon and General Dynamics of U.S. and Rosoboronexport of Russia. Finally, Rafael was awarded the contract.
As for the Javelin ATGM of the U.S, India has been angling for them for few years now. After heavy negotiations and interactions with U.S in 2009, the Indian Defence Ministry, pressurized by the Indian Army, was convinced to acquire Javelin ATGM from U.S on a government to government basis. Interestingly, the Javelin ATGM was sought because at that time, the Spike ATGM of Israel had failed the hot and cold trials in India. Another reason for the purchase of Javelin ATGM on country-to-country basis is the reluctance of Raytheon of United States to enter into an open competitive process here which it finds very expensive and time-taking. The fire-and-forget Javelin weapon system will be man-portable over short distances. The ATGMs will have third generation guidance systems with active/passive guidance system with fire and forget and top attack capability. It will have a unit to indicate Infra Red interference and should comply with electro-magnetic interference and electro magnetic compatibility parameters.
Besides the acquisition of Spike ATGM, the Indian Army is also acquiring the homemade Nag ATGM and the Indian Army has placed an order for the purchase of 443 Nag missiles. Nag ATGM is a third-generation fire-and-forget anti-tank missile with a 4-6 kilometer range. DRDO had asked Rafael of Israel to provide the Seeker Heads and followed it up with a formal contract with the Israeli company. The Nag had earlier been developed with the Seeker Head from Thales who, however did not agree to transfer the technology.
The Nag ATGM production will lead to replacement of the existing Russian Konkours and Euro missile Milan missiles. State-owned Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) manufactures the Nag missile besides the second-generation Russian licensed Konkurs and French licensed Milan anti-tank missiles. Several public sector units and the private industry will participate in the fabricating and assembly of key components of the Nag ATGM.