"The IAF (Air Force) needs to have a minimum number of aircraft at all times. The LCA is our best option at this stage, given our resource constraints," the source said as quoted by The Times of India, adding that a Rafale deal would be an unnecessary expense.
In April, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande agreed on the purchase of 36 Rafale fighters for the the Indian Air Force, to be designed and built by the French company Dassault Aviation.
India has been developing a domestic Tejas fighter for 32 years, following government approval in 1983. The aircraft had been set to enter service in 1994 when India canceled a proprietary engine for the Tejas, asking GE Aviation for assistance. A single Tejas aircraft has been produced to date, and that still pending final flight approval, which has been postponed until early 2016.