Bangalore: As part of its modernisation and network-centric warfare and communications program, the Indian navy is looking to acquire a dedicated earth imaging satellite — Geo Imaging Satellite-2 (GISAT-2) — this fiscal. Once operational, the satellite is expected to enhance the navy’s operational capabilities in the Indian Ocean region, which is strategically and geopolitically important, especially in the backdrop of increasing Chinese presence.

The GISAT-2, is among 21 planned procurements, including some long-term acquisitions as per information from the ministry of defence (MoD). The capability development/modernisation of the navy is being undertaken in accordance with the long-term plans being put in place for the next decade.

“The navy has been allotted Rs 45,250 crore for modernisation under budget estimates for 2022-23. Considering a 10% year-on-year growth, it is likely to be allotted more than Rs 2.7-lakh-crore for modernisation by 2026-27. The present total committed liabilities of the navy is Rs 1.20-lakh-crore and modernisation schemes for more than Rs 1.9-lakh-crore and Rs 2.5-lakh-crore (under Part A and B of the annual acquisition plan) are being progressed for contract conclusion over the next five years,” according to MoD.

Aside from GISAT-2, the navy will procure next generation missile vessels, fleet support ship (FSS), high and medium altitude long endurance remotely piloted aircraft systems, multi-role carrier borne fighters, indigenous aircraft carrier-2, next generation fast attack craft, next generation corvettes, destroyers, fast interceptor craft and survey vessel, national hospital ship; electronic warfare system, extra large unmanned underwater vehicle, anti-ship missiles (consolidated case for requirements up to 2030), medium range anti-ship missile system, simulator and missiles; MR SAM missiles etc. While the MoD has listed GISAT-2 for procurement this fiscal, the timeline for development of the satellite and launch have not been firmed up yet. Among the armed forces, the navy has been ahead when it comes to acquiring satellites.