AirForce appears to win in internal skirmish with Army over Apache helo assignment to

AirForce appears to win in internal skirmish with Army over Apache helo assignment to

Last year India’s Defense Minister A.K. Antony decided that “future” procurements of attack helicopters would be for the Army since the force contended it needed the gunships to target enemy infantry and tanks on the ground. According to the Times of India, the Indian Air Force argued it should be allowed to retain all the attack and medium-lift helicopters because it would be “very expensive” if the Army duplicated efforts and resources by getting its own “little air force”. The command and control over IAF’s two existing squadrons of Mi-25/35 attack helicopters was in any case in the hands of Army.

After MoD said the Army would also get its own attack helicopters to resolve the imbroglio, the force had laid claim to the “ownership” of the 22 Apache helicopters as well. “

But the procurement process for the 22 Boeing Apache helicopters began much before the decision about giving Army ownership of future such inductions was taken,” said an MoD official quoted in the paper today. So the IAF will indeed receive these helos.

What this means

The turf battle between the historically strong Indian Army and an increasingly assertive Air Force and as well as Navy, is not going to abate any time soon.


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