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India Should Analyse MQ-9 Drone Downing by Houthis Before Buying: Navy Veteran

© The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies MQ-9 Reaper
MQ-9 Reaper - Sputnik India, 1920, 19.02.2024
The Yemeni Armed Forces said on Monday that they have shot down an US MQ-9 drone at Gulf of Aden with a missile. This is the second MQ-9 drone to have been shot by Houthis since last November.
India will definitely take note of the shooting down of the American MQ-9 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) by the Houthis since it is a "prospective buyer" of these drones, an Indian Naval veteran has told Sputnik India.

Commodore (retired) Seshadri Vasan, the Regional Director of National Maritime Foundation (NMF) and the Director General of Chennai Centre for China Studies (C3S), remarked that the circumstances surrounding the downing of the drones should be "carefully analysed" by New Delhi.

"While I won't describe it as a matter of serious concern for India, New Delhi would like to seek more information from the US on what led to the downing of the MQ-9 drone by the Houthis," Vasan said.

He reckoned that the "lacunae" surrounding the downing of the American drones may have to do with "tactical aspects, lack of information exchanges or with the controls", as he underscored the need to address the "shortfalls" surrounding the UAVs.
"The information on the matter will be shared by the US since we are a prospective buyer of these drones... I am sure all the relevant data around the circumstances would be shared with India by the seller. It is important that we aren't taken for a ride due to the nitty-gritties surrounding the operational aspects of these drones," stated Vasan.

India-US Deal for MQ-9 Drones

The remarks by the Indian naval veteran comes against the backdrop of New Delhi and Washington DC finalising a deal for the purchase of 31 MQ-9B 'Predator' drones at a price of $3.99 billion.
Admiral R Hari Kumar, the Indian Navy Chief, announced on Sunday that a letter of request for 31 Predator drones has been cleared by India's Defence Acquisition Council, chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, last week.
The deal was announced during the state visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the US last June.
MQ-9B SeaGuardian - Sputnik India, 1920, 25.06.2023
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India to 'Negotiate' $3 Bln Price Tag For MQ-9B Drone Deal With US
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