French pilots flying the Mirage 2000D and Mirage F1 prepare to conduct a strike mission from their currently deployed position at Mali’s Bamako airport.
From abstentia to then later criticism of 2011’s Libya intervention, India has shifted its traditional stance and come out in favor of France’s Mali intervention. As reported by the TOI on 11FEB13:
There appear to be three broad reasons. First, Indian support to the French operation in Mali is predicated on it being a primarily counter-terror operation… Second, India’s impetus to rush to the aid of Mali was also influenced by reports from the UN that some of the al-Qaida fighters may be from the Af-Pak region…Third, the lead role in the Mali intervention has been played by France. Indian officials said they have been “kept in the loop” by Paris from the beginning. In December 2012, during its last month at the UN Security Council, India co-sponsored a French resolution UNSCR 2085 that supported an African Union-ECOWAS military force in Mali. [Ergo] [t]he French military intervention in Mali has not prompted the expected negative reaction from New Delhi.
And, the target this time around is al-Qaida and its affiliated groups in that region, where India, like others, is developing economic interests. India’s reaction to the France-led operation in Libya in 2011 was much more negative. In fact, many in the Indian government believe that the Mali crisis was a natural blowback of the Libya conflict.
Mr. Bernard Buisson, Managing Director of DCNS India; Mr. Bernard Planchais, Chief Operating Officer of DCNS; H.E. Francois Richier, The Ambassador of France in India;
Shri M.M. Pallam Raju, Minister of State for Defence; Shri B.A. Prabhakar, Chairman of Andhra Bank; Mr. DS Rao, Chairman of SEC Industries; D. Vidyasagar, Managing Director of SEC Industries. (Picture: DCNS)
SEC Industries and DCNS on 17JUL12 officially inaugurated new workshop facilities and delivered, after successful Factory Acceptance Tests, the cofferdam doors coamings for the Indian P75* Scorpene submarines. The facilities were inaugurated by Shri M.M. Pallam Raju, the Indian Honbl’e Minister of State for Defence, Government of India. French Ambassador to India, H.E. Mr. François Richier was present at the occasion along with other Indian senior dignitaries and officials.
In September 2011, DCNS India** signed a contract with SEC Industries for the manufacture of for high technological equipment for the P75 Scorpene submarines. A second contract was signed in May 2012 for additional items. These contracts cover an extensive Transfer of Technology (TOT), today running at full speed. The contract is part of the indigenization programme implemented by DCNS India under the P75 Mazagon Purchased Materials (MPM) contracts.
By helping SEC industries in building new industrial workshops and in delivering cofferdam coamings for Scorpene submarines, DCNS has achieved yet another milestone in its endeavour to manufacture indigenous products and equipments and provide transfer of technology under P75 Scorpene submarine programme.