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Indian Army to get its own attack helicopters

 
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 10:44 am    Post subject: Indian Army to get its own attack helicopters Reply with quote

http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/indian-army-to-get-its-own-attack-helicopters-279044

Indian Army to get its own attack helicopters

October 12, 2012

In a move that is likely raise hackles within the Indian Air Force (IAF), the government has decided to allow the Indian Army to acquire its own fleet of attack helicopters.

The decision comes days after IAF chief Air Marshal N A K Browne told reporters on October 5 that it was not possible to have "little air forces". Days later, on October 9, Defence Minister A K Antony, had termed the fight between the IAF and Army over the attack helicopters as a 'family problem'.

National Security Advisor Shiv Shanker Menon had to intervene on behalf of Defence Minister A K Antony in the three year row between the Air Force and the Army over who would own the attack helicopters.

After talking to both Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne and Army Chief General Bikram Singh this week, Mr Menon advised the Government that Army should own and operate the medium lift attack helicopters. The first batch of Apache helicopters to be bought from USA programme may go the Indian Army. Currently, India has two squadrons of attack helicopters, Mi-25 and Mi-35, which are maintained and manned by the Indian Air Force but under the operational control of the Indian Army.

The Indian Army has been for long making a case for having its own fleet of attack helicopters. The Army contends that having its own attack helicopters rather than depending on the IAF would give the land forces more power and reach in tactical situations.

It also argued that having its own attack helicopters is integral to the Cold Start Doctrine - designed to cut down the time taken to mobilise troops. Apart from the three strike Corps, Army has now designated its holding corps as the pivot which can launch offensive defence before strike corps take over. Concerned with enormous time taken to mobilise the strike corps after the 2001 terrorist strike on the Indian Parliament - after which India nearly went to war with Pakistan - the Army revised its deployment and operational plans.

The IAF, however, argues that using attack helicopters without the support of larger air assets like interceptor and attack aircraft would make the slow moving attack helicopters vulnerable. And to ensure that large aircraft are always available to support and sanitise airspace, the attack helicopters should be with the IAF. Also, the IAF contends land forces which are equipped with attack helicopters - like the US - fights wars differently than India.

The IAF had also contended that allowing the Army to own attack helicopter would lead to duplication of assets.

The proposal to arm the Indian Army with attack helicopters was mooted by the former controversial Chief of Army Staff V K Singh as a part of transformation of the Army into a more leaner, meaner and network-centric force. Four exercises held on the western front under Western and South Western Commands in 2011 and 2012 had brought out the need to have attack helicopters as an integral part of the assembled firepower. The proposal was shelved after the relation between the Government and Army Headquarters plummeted following the age row of General V K Singh.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 10:03 am    Post subject: Re: Indian Army to get its own attack helicopters Reply with quote

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The first batch of Apache helicopters to be bought from USA programme may go the Indian Army.


IAF, not Army, will get Apache attack helicopters: Govt

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/IAF-not-Army-will-get-Apache-attack-helicopters-Govt/articleshow/19331628.cms
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why Indian army asking for its own airforce. Are they short of toys?
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Why Indian army asking for its own airforce. Are they short of toys?


Lack of efficient integration with IAF has resulted in raised voices for its own air wing.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 11:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aseem wrote:
sabya99 wrote:
Why Indian army asking for its own airforce. Are they short of toys?


Lack of efficient integration with IAF has resulted in raised voices for its own air wing.

VT-ASJ


This is a complex issue. In the early days of republic of India , Army top brasses didnít have much respect or faith for air force. Only after air force managed to transport troops and supplies to Kashmir Theater , they developed some respect. I remember Gen. Jayanta Nath Chaudhury during 1965 Indo-Pak war literally considered IAF as an auxiliary force ( after Chumb sector fiasco ).His macho attitude was not accepted well among the IAF top brasses . Only in Bangladesh war of 1971 the coordination of IAF/Army was superb and there was no personality conflict among the top brasses of the two organizations. But the mutual mistrust still lingers on even during dark days of Kargil. Perhaps this is the reason Army donít like to embed IAF chopper units into its strike forces. But such rivalry and jealousy are common to even US defense forces!
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All stupid ego issues. The truth is that neither force can solely guard or attack the enemy. It will need a combination . And in todays times, swift and deadly responses from the air are even more important than ever before. The army cannot hope to rush into enemy territory , all guns blazing hoping to destroy and conquer. That kind of strategy was defeated long ago even by Shivaji against Mughals !!
The AF needs to be the first choice of attack and rapid destuction before the Army can take any decisive steps.
So all aerial weapon assets should be IMO with the Air Force only. Army can have limited assets in areas of tactical troop mobilization etc.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ssbmat wrote:

So all aerial weapon assets should be IMO with the Air Force only.c.


I don't think so. Many armies in the World have attack helicopters as they complement the infantry and artillery for low level missions which are not deep penetrating. So it is better to have them in the same chain of command.

The IAF, during the fifties and sixties, was also involved in doing maritime surveillance using Liberator bombers and Lockheed Constellations. This activity was transferred to the Navy for the same reason and the IAF was mighty pissed with the decision.

The notion that every flying military object should be with the Air Force is simply incorrect.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@ The Goat, I agree with you about the availability of aircraft to Navy and Army independently. Modern navy could not function without air supremacy. Anti Sub jobs could not be done without airpower and for invasion of hostile coast line air assault is a must. Also maritime surveillance is an important duty of navy and coast guard.
But for army other than antitank choppers there are no other role of independent air wing nor countries have assigned separated air power dedicated for a attack formation. Besides choppers are technically complicated somewhat clumsy machines. So it better to have choppers under IAF technical control but with army operational control. Each defense wing with its own air force is not an acceptable concept.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
@ The Goat, I agree with you about the availability of aircraft to Navy and Army independently. Modern navy could not function without air supremacy. Anti Sub jobs could not be done without airpower and for invasion of hostile coast line air assault is a must. Also maritime surveillance is an important duty of navy and coast guard.
But for army other than antitank choppers there are no other role of independent air wing nor countries have assigned separated air power dedicated for a attack formation. Besides choppers are technically complicated somewhat clumsy machines. So it better to have choppers under IAF technical control but with army operational control. Each defense wing with its own air force is not an acceptable concept.


I am sure that there might be some silly operational issues like whether a Sqn Leader from IAF in charge of the chopper squadron should report to a Colonel from the Army unit where the squadron is operational etc..

Each force has a distinct capability of its own and a clear need of interface with the other if required. I suppose part of the responsibilities of the Joint Chief of Staff is to thrash this out and operationalize it.
And lastly, the Service chiefs should directly report to Prime Minister, instead of MoD. The MoD should be at their disposal, not the other way round!!
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/defence/assault-choppers-to-remain-with-iaf-air-chief-marshal-bs-dhanoa/articleshow/57782463.cms

Assault choppers to remain with IAF : Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa

Mar 23, 2017

The Indian Air Force will continue to operate assault choppers and will not transfer its assets to the Army that is also raising a fleet of attack helicopters, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa has said.

He added that the IAF was looking forward to inducting the Apache attack helicopter, which he described as one of the best in the world, and would continue to support the Army during operational needs.

He made it clear that IAF was not keen on transferring either its new Apache choppers that are to be delivered or the Mi 35/25 already in operation.

ďOn induction of attack helicopters by the Army, the IAF has maintained that, it has no objection to any internal restructuring within the Army as long as this does not pre-suppose the transfer of assets of the Air Force or impinge on the enunciated role of the IAF.

We will continue operating and maintaining the attack helicopter fleet comprising Mi-25/35, Apache and LCH and will provide all necessary support to the Army,Ē the Air Chief responded to queries by ET.

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PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/army-wants-its-own-mini-air-force-pitches-for-heavy-duty-attack-helicopters/articleshow/58756733.cms

Army wants its own 'mini Air Force', pitches for heavy-duty attack helicopters

May 20, 2017

The Army has now strongly revived its old quest for a "mini air force" of its own, in a move that has been bitterly opposed by the IAF in the past.

The force wants three squadrons of heavy-duty attack helicopters, among other choppers, for its three primary "strike" corps geared for rapid armoured thrusts into enemy territory.

For starters, the 1.3-million strong Army is seeking the government's approval for acquisition of 11 Apache attack helicopters from the US as "a follow-on contract" to the earlier Rs 13,952 crore deal inked for 22 such choppers for the IAF+ .

"The procurement proposal is likely to be considered by the defence acquisitions council (DAC) in its meeting to be chaired by defence minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday," said a defence ministry source.

The Army is in a hurry because the "50% repeat order option", with the same terms and conditions, can be exercised only till September 28 since the original contract was inked on that date in 2015.

One part of that "hybrid" deal had been inked with Boeing for the choppers, while the other for its weapons, radars and electronic warfare suites was signed with the US government. Apart from the 22 Apaches to be delivered to IAF from July 2019 onwards, the contract also involves acquisition of 812 AGM-114L-3 Hellfire Longbow missiles, 542 AGM-114R-3 Hellfire-II missiles, 245 Stinger Block I-92H missiles and 12 AN/APG-78 fire-control radars.

Even during the procurement process for the 22 Apaches, the Army had demanded their "ownership and control" because helicopter gunships are used as the "air manoeuvre arm" of ground forces to target enemy infantry and tanks the world over.

The Army believes it should have "full command and control" over "tactical air assets" for rapid deployment along with its strike corps, while the IAF should concentrate on its "larger strategic role".

The IAF, in turn, had contended it should retain all 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 then UPA government had ruled that the first 22 Apaches would go to IAF to add to its two existing, but ageing, squadrons of Russian-origin Mi-25/35 attack helicopters. But it also held "future" procurements of attack helicopters would be for the Army, granting "in principle approval" to its case for raising three squadrons (13 choppers each) for the strike formations - 1 Corps (Mathura), 2 Corps (Ambala) and 21 Corps (Bhopal).

"Army Aviation Corps, raised in 1986, has over 250 Chetak/Cheetah light choppers and Dhruv advanced light helicopters. It should also get attack helicopters now since their control by IAF is a sub-optimal arrangement," said a senior officer.

The Army's long-term plans include three helicopter squadrons (armed/attack, reconnaissance and tactical lift) each for all its 14 corps as well as "a flight" of five fixed-wing aircraft each for its six regional or operational commands.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2017 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/army-to-get-six-heavy-duty-apache-attack-helicopters/articleshow/60105381.cms

Finally, Army to get six heavy-duty Apache attack helicopters

Aug 17, 2017

The Army will finally get its own heavy-duty attack helicopters after a bitter tussle with the IAF over the last several years. The defence ministry on Thursday cleared the acquisition of six Apache attack helicopters, armed with Hellfire and Stinger missiles, for the Army at a cost of Rs 4,168 crore.

The 1.3-million strong Army had earlier sought the government's approval for acquisition of 11 Apache helicopters from the US as "a follow-on contract" to the Rs 13,952 crore deal inked for 22 such choppers for the IAF in September 2015, as was reported by TOI.

But after stiff opposition from the IAF, the Arun Jaitley-led defence acquisitions council (DAC) on Thursday cleared the Army's whittled down proposal for the six AH-64E Apache helicopters, which are manufactured by Boeing.

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