If a US government plan to sell six Apache attack helicopters to India goes ahead, the country’s defence capability to counter ground-armoured threats will increase.
Washington has approved the $930 million deal to sell the Indian military six AH-64E Apache attack helicopters, the State Department said on Tuesday (12 June). The agreement, which is awaiting the approval of the US Congress, is expected to go ahead if no US lawmaker objects to the contract.
Boeing and Tata have begun to produce Apache fuselages at a plant in India, but Tuesday’s approval relates to a direct sale of finished products from US manufacturers. The lead contractors are US arms, aviations and engineering giants Lockheed Martin, General Electric and Raytheon.
In addition to aircraft, the contract includes night vision sensors, GPS guidance and hundreds of Hellfire anti-armour and Stinger air-to-air missiles.
The addition of the AH-64E will modernise India’s armed forces, said the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency. “India will have no difficulty absorbing the helicopters and support equipment into its armed forces. The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.”