Ministry of defense will probably remove Hindustan Aeronautics Limited from 21000 crore project to manufacture helicopters that had been reserved for the private sector.  But the government-owned entity is set to get a mega order to produce 83 new Light Combat Aircraft in the coming weeks, taking its order book beyond Rs 1lakh crore.

The Naval Operations Helicopter project is now on its way to the next stage, as the Navy identifies four domestic companies that could collaborate with three selected foreign vendors to compete for 111 chopper manufacturing in India.

HAL made a final effort by writing to defense ministries last month to enter the competition. The bid from Defense PSU had been rejected earlier because the tenders had made it clear that only companies from the private sector are eligible.

Tata, Mahindra, Adani, and Bharat Forge have been identified as financial and technical companies and as potential technology partners, foreign vendors Airbus, Sikorsky, and Kamov have been selected. 

Nevertheless, for the next five years, the hands of HAL will be full with the government likely to sign an agreement for 83 fighter jets from LCA Mk 1 which would cross Rs 40 000 cr. The contract might be signed at the upcoming DefExpo in Lucknow at the beginning of next week, although it is assumed that the first payments are anticipated during the coming financial year. This is great news for Indian Private industry.

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