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DRDO co-developing MRSA missiles with Israel

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NEW DELHI (PTI): Defence Minister A K Antony Wednesday clarified in the Rajya Sabha that the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) was co-developing Medium Range Surface to Air Missiles (MRSAM) with Israel and not importing Medium Range Surface to Surface Air missiles from there.

"DRDO has not entered in to any contract with Israel to import Medium Range Surface to Surface Air Missiles. It has, however, entered into a contract with the Israeli Aerospace Industry (IAI) for joint development of MRSAMs in 2009," Antony said while replying to a query in the Rajya Sabha.

India had signed a contract worth Rs 10,000 crore with the IAI for jointly developing and producing the MRSAMs.

After the deal was finalised, allegations of wrongdoings were leveled against the Defence Minister and the ruling Congress, which defended the decision to award the contract to the Israeli company and rejected corruption accusations against the Defence Minister.

Antony had personally approved the deal with the Israeli company after various wings of the Defence Ministry claimed it was in national interest.

This was done despite Left parties objecting to it in a letter to the Prime Minister, seeking a CBI probe and citing the Vigilance Department's objections in the supply of Barak missiles for the Indian Navy.

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