India’s defence ministry on July 2 agreed to expedite the procurement of attack helicopters and other critical equipment and weapon systems. At a meeting to review the deficiencies and requirements of India’s military services, Defence Minister Mr A.K. Antony asked the forces to fully utilize their allocated budgets toward capital procurement and carry out systemic changes required to achieve the desired output in a short time span. “The requirement of air combat support, in the form of attack helicopters, over which the army and the air force have differed in the past, was discussed at the meeting,” a defence ministry official says. The army has demanded its own assets, while the Indian air force has tried to retain control over the current fleet of Russian-made Mi-35 attack helicopters and future helicopter acquisitions, he says. India is seeking 22 heavy attack helicopters, and it is understood to have selected Boeing’s Apache as the preferred choice over Russia’s Mi-28N Night Hunter.
Source: Aviation Week
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