New Delhi: Last year in the month of September, the Govt. of India approved the purchase of the battle proven AH-64 Apache Gunship Helicopters for the Indian Air Force. The total amount included the delivery of 22 Apache Helicopters along with Weapons, radars and warfare equipment that will arm the Apache Gunship to the teeth.
The contract however had an open option for India to purchase additional helicopters if required. Internal sources suggest that the Govt.may invoke this option and go for an additional purchase of 39 more Apache Gunships from the U.S.
The first 22 Gunships are meant to replace the aging Mi-35 Attack Helicopters that were bought from Russia for the Indian Air Force. The additional 39 Apache Gunships that the Govt. proposes to buy will be merged with India’s four Mountain Strike Corps. This will give the required offensive firepower to tear into enemy territory, may it be China or Pakistan.
The 39 proposed Gunships will be within the control of the Indian Army and not the Air Force.The first lot of 22 Apache Helicopters will be delivered to the Indian Air Force within the next three years. The time frame for the additional 39 proposed Apache Gunships is however not confirmed as the deal is not yet signed.