India tests its new light combat helicopters in Ladakh amidst border row with China
NEW DELHI: India has deployed two of its new indigenous light combat helicopters, apart from the heavy-duty Apache attack and Chinook heavy-lift choppers acquired from the US, in Ladakh amidst the ongoing military confrontation with China there.
The deployment of the twin-engine LCHs, which are not fully weaponized yet, in the high-altitude region is a show of support for the indigenous choppers ahead of their proposed induction into the armed forces.
The initial order for 15 LCHs is likely to be placed on defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) before the end of this year, with the overall requirement of such 5.5-tonne class choppers by the IAF and Army pegged at 160 as of now.
“The LCH is the lightest attack helicopter in the world, designed and developed by HAL to meet the specific and unique requirements of Indian armed forces. It reflects the crucial role of HAL in `Atma Nirbhar Bharat’,” said HAL chairman R Madhavan on Wednesday.
Such LCHs figure in the negative arms import list announced by the defence ministry on Sunday, under which acquisition of 101 weapon systems and platforms from abroad will be progressively banned from December 2020 to December 2025, in a bid to bolster the fledgling domestic defence production sector.
The Indian LCHs, which are currently equipped with 70mm rockets and chin-mounted cannons, do not yet have anti-tank and air-to-air missiles. The LCH, however, has the distinction of being the first attack helicopter to land at forward bases in the Siachen Glacier-Saltoro Ridge region, 4,700 meters above sea level with a 500-kg load.
IAF vice chief Air Marshal Harjit Singh Arora also flew in the LCH, which is powered by two Shakti engines, during his visit to forward air bases in Ladakh last week. “He took off in the LCH from a high-altitude location to a forward area for a simulated attack on a high-altitude target,” said HAL.
“This was followed by a landing at one of the most treacherous helipads in the region. The LCH successfully demonstrated its quick deployment prowess to forward locations in extreme temperatures,” it added.
The LCH is “a potent weapon platform” because of its state-of-the-art systems and highly accurate weapons that are capable of hitting any type of target by day or night.
It has capability to carry an adequate weapon load at high-altitudes under varied conditions, said HAL, which hopes to achieve “peak production” of 30 such choppers per year.
kash, if this all Congress would have done in their re gie then today india would have been in totally very high platform and china would not have dared to dominate india. thanks to Modi govt. congress is purely political party only who only thinks in vote bank manner
Congress is a gone case. But I wonder why with all these military facilities with us, China is not leaving the land they have occupied? Are they fools not to understand our strength?
Boycott china and congress.
It can't grow without China. Modi and his forfathers know this better than me and you.
Pradip Kumar Shome
We have hope in this brute machine developed by our engineers.
This kind of news only gives Indians the false sense of Indian superiority over China. India is only testing TWO of its HAL new LCHs but blown it up as 'deployed' and combat ready. No wonder China is not impressed by India's show of forces at the border.
All 6 years, modi was busy in competing with Pakistan and got defeated from china instead. Now he is realising his mistake but it's too late. Modi is another Nehru.
Congratulations to HAL, our scientists, our Indian Air force. Need of the hour is to load this power packed machine with Air to air, air to ground missiles, with its own Radar tracking, jammers. Only then, it's real potential will turn out. Thank you Modi go nment. Jai Bharat
Boycott all Chinese and Muslims products and shops. Only support Indian products that way Hindus will progress in India.
More than these helicopters and other machines, we have faith in our soldiers to drive the chinese from our land.
Even the Iranians had the guts to send in barrage of missiles on American bases in Iraq after the Solemani tragedy
Handover borders security to AMERlCAN forces and send lndian Cwrd army to buildup toilets in the country. Remove Surrender Modi and handover County to U$..
Without weaponized Systems, these LCHs are just sitting dodos. Stop risking lives of our brave soldiers.
India is indirectly showing its powers to China
Manyam Raja Ram
Much of talks than action. Either fight or leave .