NEW DELHI — Fifteen new Russian-made MiG-29K fighter jets have been inducted for Indian Navy carrier-borne operations, Indian Defence Minister, A.K. Antony told the country’s Parliament. These aircraft will operate from the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, formerly called the Admiral Gorshkov when in Russian service, which is planned for induction in December.
Antony also said a contract has been concluded to acquire an additional 29 MiG-29Ks to strengthen the air combat capability of the Navy.
India placed an order for 16 MiG-29Ks for $650 million in 2004 to be used on the Russian-made Vikramaditya. A repeat order for $1.5 billion was placed in early 2010 to purchase the 29 additional MiG-29Ks. The Vikramaditya is undergoing a refit in Russia
A trainer version of the MiG-29K, which was part of the aircraft carrier deal, crashed June 23, 2011, in southern Russia, killing its two-member crew. Although no details are known of the probe into the crash. the finalization of the contract for additional MiG-29Ks suggests Indian officials are satisfied with the aircraft, said an Indian Defence Ministry official.