India Finance Adani Ports
The Adani Group, Weapons and Israel
Feb 26, 2024
The Hermes 900, an unmanned aerial vehicle capable of carrying a 400-kg bomb, jointly manufactured by Adani Enterprises and an Israeli arms company.

For the last five years, the Adani Group has been expanding its businesses in India to include manufacturing of drones and other weapons with Israeli arms companies and for the Israel Defence Forces. The Adani Group claims it also used to ‘support the Indian Armed Forces and other paramilitary forces in India’.

(The text of this story has been obtained from a StopAdani web page.)

In 2018, Adani Enterprises (the primary coal-mining business of the Adani Group) and Elbit Systems (Israel’s largest arms producer) launched a joint venture, Adani Elbit Advanced Systems India Limited. Its first order was to make the Hermes 900 UAV for the Israel Defence Forces. Elbit makes 85% of the drones used by the Israel Defence Forces.

Adani-Elbit operates the only Hermes 900 production facility outside of Israel – in Hyderabad, India. Adani says ‘Hermes 900 is a state-of-the-art, combat-proven multi-role unmanned platform with an endurance of 36 hours, payload capacity of 420 kg, altitude of over 32,000 feet (10km+) with applications across civil, defence and homeland security’.

Part of an Adani Group promotion

Hermes 900 is a massive military drone that carries missiles to bomb and kill people. It is also used in ‘intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR)’. It was first used by Israel in the 2014 50-day attack on Gaza. The Hermes 900 ‘also comes with electro optical and infra-red sensors, making it one of the most preferred drones of the Israeli Air Force’.

In 2023 and 2024, the Israeli government used Hermes 900 drones to bomb Gaza, killing thousands of civilians.

Beyond manufacturing drones and weapons, Adani’s counter-drone systems are sold to and deployed in Israel – Adani describes the relevant product as a ‘Hunting Drone’.

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Adani develops and manufactures assault weapons, sniper rifles and machine guns with Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) for the Israel Defence Forces.

In 2018, Adani announced a joint venture with Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) to manufacture ‘IWI weapons like TAVOR Assault Rifle, X95 Assault Rifle, GALIL Sniper Rifle, NEGEV Light Machine Gun and UZI Sub Machine Gun’ in Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh. Adani owns 51% of the company and IWI the remaining 49%.

The Hermes 900, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or drone, a 'combat proven' offensive weapon when armed with up to 420 kg of weaponry. Image Wikimedia Commons

They called the joint-venture company PLR Systems – which stands for Precise, Lethal, Reliable. IWI was formerly owned by the State of Israel, but the Small Arms Division of IMI was privatised and renamed IWI in 2005.

In October 2022, Adani announced its business with IWI was expanding to weapons controlled by artificial intelligence (AI). Adani Defence and Aerospace and Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) unveiled ‘India's first AI-based firing system, ARBEL, the next-generation small-arms solution’ at the DefExpo 2022 in Gandhinagar, in the Indian state of Gujarat (home state of both PM Narendra Modi and Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani).

In January 2023, Israel privatised and sold the Haifa port to the Adani Group (70%) and Israel's Gadot Group (30%), providing approximately US $1.6 billion to the state of Israel. Many Australian superannuation funds are invested in the Adani Group, such as Australian Super, CBUS, Brighter Super and Rest.

The Adani Group is part of a joint venture that owns Haifa Port in Israel. Image Wikimedia Commons