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Low-level radars cleared

New Delhi, Dec. 8 (PTI): The Centre has cleared induction of the Low Level Transportable Radars, which would give the Indian Air Force and Army capability to effectively screen snap airspace intrusions in mountain and desert terrain, following concern over several undetected breaches by Pakistani unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The government approved a $90-million project, submitted by IAF six years ago, after the defence ministry finally woke up to the dangers posed by UAV intrusions, such as the one over Poonch sector in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Technical proposals for LLTR have been received and are being analysed by a joint team of IAF and Bharat Electronics Limited experts,” defence minister George Fernandes said. The project will be processed further after the receipt of the technical evaluation report, the defence minister said.

Major Israeli, French and German companies are in the running to grab the deal, he added.

The radar, which can be manually operated or installed in light vehicles along with boosters, will detect field army formations a look into enemy air space up to a depth of 10-60 km, air force experts said. It is ideal for detecting intrusions over mountainous terrain, they added.

Pakistan is using Chinese high-altitude spy planes to observe Indian forward deployment. These aircraft use the cover of mountain shadows to sneak into Indian airspace and map ground positions for 10 to 25 minutes before army and IAF radars detect them, experts said.

Over the last two years, Pakistani spy aircraft were sighted over Chamb, Rajouri, Poonch and Kargil sectors as well as Kupwara.

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