At­tack he­li­copters from Army


The gov­ern­ment has ac­corded cru­cial clear­ance to the Army to op­er­ate its own at­tack he­li­copter units, bring­ing to a close a long-stand­ing spat be­tween the Army and the Air Force over tac­ti­cal bat­tle­field as­sets. In­dia cur­rently has two at­tack he­li­copter units, both un­der the com­mand and con­trol of the Army, but flown and main­tained by IAF pi­lots and per­son­nel.

The gov­ern­ment’s ap­proval could mean ei­ther of the three things: (a) that the two Mi-25/35 flights un­der two he­li­copter units will soon be flown by Army Avi­a­tion pi­lots (the chop­pers are in IAF liv­ery) and the IAF will raise new units to house the 22 new at­tack he­li­copters (prospec­tively, the Boe­ing AH-64D Apache Block III) and, later, the light com­bat he­li­copter or, (b) The Mi-25/35s will be trans­ferred to the IAF com­mand and con­trol, while the Army raises new units and floats fresh re­quire­ments (it al­ready stands to re­ceive the Dhruv-WSI), or (c) a sta­tus quo on com­mand and con­trol of the cur­rent units, un­til new plat­forms en­ter ser­vice.

Boe­ing AH-64D Apache Block III

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