Indian Air Force, on Sunday, has received delivery of first batch of four chinook helicopters. These are multi role helicopters that operate on vertical lift principle. The machines were received from their manufacturer Boeing, one month ahead of original delivery schedule. These will be ferried to Chandigarh and will be formally inducted into Air Force later this year.
How it started
- Cost negotiations for the deal was completed in 2013
- The deal worth $2.5 billion to buy 15 Chinook and 22 apache helicopters was first cleared in 2015
- The conclusion of the sale was delayed by almost three years, owing to perpetual negotiations regarding offset clause
Make in India
- As per defence procurement policy, the manufacturer has to comply with 30% offset clause
- This will bring in over $600 million offset contracts to India
- Boeing has been extending its vender partners in India by strengthening the supply chain mechanism with over 160 partners
The details about the machines
- Chinook is mainly a heavy lift machine, which can be used to transport troops or other relevant material during war, disaster relief or refugee eviction operations. It can take 9.6 tons of load.
- Apache is one of the most advanced multi role combat helicopter with features like beyond visual range missiles, low flying capabilities to avoid radar detection, all weather flying support and night combat capabilities.
- Apache will be the first ever pure attack helicopter.
What does this delivery means to defence forces
- Due to their heavy lift capabilities, it can be used to air lift heavy weight machines, artillery, equipments and fuel during the war or humanitarian missions
- Its ability to operate in high altitude will help Indian Air force to quickly respond to any uncalled situation in the mountain region of northern and western border
- It will give a big boost to operational capabilities of the forces along with existing fleet of C-130 Hercules and C-17 Globemaster
Army had also put the strong case to induct a fleet of Apache attach helicopters for their aviation wing. But this fleet of Chinooks and Apaches will be operated by Indian Air Force (IAF).