An Indian Air Force Mil Mi-17V-5 (Image © Russian Helicopters)

India to buy another 48 Hips, eager to beef up rotary airlift

The Indian Air Force is to acquire another 48 Mil Mi-17V tactical transport helicopters from Russian Helicopters, the Economic Times of India reports.

Unable yet to start up indigenous production of this machine – something Indian and Russian authorities have not been able to agree upon yet – the military leadership is eager to beef up its rotary airlift fleet.

The Indian Air Force already has 139 Mi-17Vs on strength, with another 33 on order. A follow-on order for 48 Mi-17Vs will enable the Air Force to replace its last aging and similar Mi-8s. As reported earlier in May India is also buying 15 Boeing CH-47F Chinook medium-lift helicopters to improve its vertical take-off and landing airlift capability.

Russia and India recently agreed to have the Russian-designed Kamov Ka-226T light helicopter to be produced in India. First estimates run from 200 to 400 helicopters for both the military and civilian markets.

© 2015 editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: An Indian Air Force Mil Mi-17V-5 (Image © Russian Helicopters)