Precision Attack & Targeting India 2014
Indian capabilities in precision attack and targeting are restricted to laser-guided bomb (LGB) kits attached to dumb bombs. The Astra beyond visual range (BVR) missile has long been under development. The Kargil conflict showed in 1999 that the Indian armed forces urgently required these capabilities in large numbers.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is upgrading a large number of unguided bombs to this standard based on the excellent results. Several IAF bombers like Mig-27, SEPECAT Jaguar, Su-30MKI, Mirage-2000 and MiG-29 could carry the LGBs for the air-to-ground attack tasks.
The Indian Navy has a large requirement for firing precision weapons from onboard launchers.
Short range close combat missiles either derived from the indigenous Astra or imported are likely to be standardised across all IAF aircraft fleets in the next ten years.
For precision attack, the Helina (an air launched variant of the Nag anti-tank missile) with an imaging infra red (IIR) seeker should be the standard fit across all types of IAF aircraft.
Indigenous Precision Guided Munitions (PGMs) with satellite navigation-laser designation/terrain matching/optical hybrid guidance systems developed indigenously should become available in the five to ten year period. Work on such weapons is being pursued, albeit at a slow pace, because these fall under unfunded private research at a few DRDO laboratories in the absence of firm IAF orders and sanction to develop such weapons.
Artillery. Less than 1% of India's artillery munition stockpile is precision guided. After India's decisive victory in Kargil 1999 the artillery has decided to exploit the superiority of trajectory correctable munitions and terminally-guided munitions. It is working procuring precision-guided munitions from the current negligible levels to 20 per cent of total available ammunition.
Anti-tank. While the Army is buying a few hundred DRDO-developed Nag fire-and-forget anti-tank missiles, it is still looking for better anti-tank missiles to make up the shortfall of 44,000 missiles through transfer of technology.