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Akash missile reported 30 per cent failure rate: CAG

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has severely criticised India’s home-made Akash air defence missile system. It stated that the missile systems ordered by the Indian Air Force to counter China is “deficient in quality” and has a 30% failure rate, which posed an “operational risk during hostilities”.

The CAG, in a report on the Indian Air Force (IAF) released on Friday, also stated that six squadrons of the missile system were to be deployed at six locations of an unidentified ‘S’ sector between 2013 and 2015, but this has not been done. This delay has happened even though `4,000 crore has already been spent for building the infrastructure for installing the systems.

Although the report does not identify the strategic missile manufactured by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), but has provided its specifications as a medium range, surface to air missile. These are the exact features of the Akash missile system.

According to the report, the Defence Ministry in December 2010 concluded a contract with BEL for the delivery of six squadrons of the Akash missile systems for `3,619.25 crore. The squadrons were to be located at six IAF stations in ‘S’ sector. Although the location of the sector has not been given in the report, the missile systems are to be deployed in the North East and Ladakh. A CAG audit found that the missile systems delivered by BEL were deficient in quality. “Out of 80 missiles received up to November 2014, 20 missiles were test fired. Six of these missiles, which is 30 per cent, failed the test,” says the report.

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