According to idrw Article Uploaded on July 12, 2018, Yakovlev Design Bureau has offered Indian Air Force a Customised Yak-130 Combat Trainer to take place of ill-fated Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) developed HJT-36 Sitara as an intermediate jet trainer (IJT) for Stage-II Pilot training program in a Government to Government offer.
Yak-130 Combat Trainer developed by Russia is a modern airplane for efficient pilots training for modern and future Russian and non-Russian aircraft including high-speed maneuverable combat training under strong overloads and large angles of attack, under any weather conditions.
Yak-130 is in the same class of BAE Hawk Mk-132 advanced jet trainers which are already operated by Indian Air Force but Mood in the Indian Air Force off late has been against BAE Systems of UK for some time now after plans to procure 20 more Hawk Mk-132 have been in doldrums for last few years due to the high asking price from the British firm from India on the new orders .
BAE Systems and HAL Jointly developed Advanced Hawk made its debut at Aero India 2017 which can carry 3 tonnes of weapons including air-to-air missiles, air-to-ground missiles, laser designation pods and precision-guided munitions was already rejected by Indian Air Force, even though IAF for the first time used Hawk Mk-132 as a light combat aircraft in Gagan Shakti-2018 Air Exercise showing its interest in arming combat trainer for secondary roles so that it can be used as a light combat aircraft by Indian Air Force .
Last year, IAF also didn’t renew maintenance deal with Pilatus Aircraft of Switzerland for its fleet of 75 PC-7 Turbo Trainers which are used as Basic Trainers in the first Stage of Training after India refused to buy additional PC-7 Turbo Trainers and also due to high maintenance deal asked by the manufacturer was the reason why IAF has taken upon its own resources and resorting to buying parts from the local market to maintain the Pilatus fleet.
HTT-40 under development by HAL will Join Indian Air Force as Basic Trainer Aircraft to supplement PC-7 fleet in IAF after it clears some critical milestones in the program while HJT-36 Sitara project is more or less abandoned after official funding to the project was cut by Ministry of Defence a few years back. Yak-130 offer of customized combat trainer to India might be Russia’s attempt to fish in troubled waters after the fallout of IAF and BAE Systems for the purchase of additional 20 Hawk Mk-132 for Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT).