The first batch of four Boeing heavy-lift Chinook Helicopters, CH-47F (I), arrived at the Mundra airport in Gujarat on February 10, 2019.
Procured from the United States, the Chinook Helicopters are expected to provide impetus to the heavy-lift capabilities of Indian Air Force (IAF) and strengthen the defence ties with the United States.
Manufactured by Boeing, the CH-47F (I) will be stationed at Chandigarh air base of the Indian Air Force. The Chandigarh air base takes care of providing necessary items to Siachen and Eastern Ladakh sectors.
The Indian Air Force is currently using Mi-17 and Mi-26 helicopters, which were manufactured by Russia.
• The CH-47F (I) Chinook is an advanced multi-mission helicopter that will provide unmatched strategic airlift capability to the Indian armed forces across the full spectrum of combat missions.
• With capability of carrying around 10 tonnes of load, these helicopters are majorly used for artillery, battlefield resupply and transportation of troops.
• These are also used for humanitarian and disaster relief operations such as transportation of relief supplies and mass evacuation of refugees.
• Chinooks have a unique twin engine and tandem rotor design, one of the most visibly recognised symbols of the American armed forces.
• The Chinook helicopter is used by 18 other defence forces around the world.
India’s procurement of Chinook Helicopters from US
Indian government has already spent USD 3 billion to buy 15 Chinook and 22 Apache attack helicopters. India also has the option to buy six more Apaches, already approved by the United States.
India signed a USD 3 billion deal with the US in September 2015 for the purchase of 15 Chinook heavy lift and 22 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters.
In October 2018, 4 pilots and 4 flight engineers of IAF were trained by Boeing for operating Chinook helicopters. The pilots and flight engineers were trained in Delaware USA.
On February 2, 2019, India was officially handed over first of the Chinook helicopters during ‘India-Chinook Transfer Ceremony’ at Boeing's facility in Philadelphia. The handover took place in the presence of Indian ambassador to US, Harsh Shringla.
What: arrive in India from US