New Delhi: Boeing has handed over the first four of the 22 Apache attack helicopters to the Indian Air Force on Saturday. Also, the US aerospace major is expected to deliver another batch of four choppers in the next week. The first batch of AH-64E Apache helicopters was delivered to the Indian Air Force at the Hindon air base and it came nearly four years after the multi-billion dollar deal was signed.
The two batches will be moved to Pathankot
Boeing said that after the next batch of four choppers is delivered, “the eight choppers will then move to the Pathankot Air Force station for their formal induction by the IAF, in September.”
The AH-64E Apache is one of the world’s most advanced combat helicopters flown by the US Army. The IAF had signed the contract for 22 Apache helicopters with the US government and Boeing in September 2015.
What does Boeing have to say?
“The arrival of the Apaches, ahead-of-schedule, validates Boeing’s commitment to delivering on its promise of modernising India’s defence forces. Boeing has ensured a high rate of mission readiness and increased operational capabilities through its current partnerships with the IAF,” Boeing said in a statement.
“By 2020, the IAF will operate a fleet of 22 Apaches, and these first deliveries are ahead of schedule,” Boeing said.
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‘World’s major attack helicopter’
The aerospace major also said the AH-64E Apache helicopter has the latest technology insertions and is counted among the world’s best attack helicopters.
“It is the only available combat helicopter with a spectrum of capabilities for virtually any mission requirement. For the AH-64 E, this includes greater thrust and lift, joint digital operability, improved survivability, and cognitive decision aiding. It is uniquely suited to meet the commander’s needs, including reconnaissance, security, peacekeeping operations, and lethal attack – in both land and littoral environments — all without reconfiguration,” Boeing said.