India’s Defence Minister A. K. Antony, ordered the Indian Army to deploy additional man power in the north-east region to counter the growing China threat.
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He informed the Indian Army while reviewing the modernisation process to be prepared to induct more attack helicopters into the force. The modernisation of the Indian Army has been in the spot light since the former Army Chief’s letters to the PM were leaked to the media. The letters pointed severe shortages in fighting equipment and systems.
India currently has two attack helicopter units, both under the command and control of the Army, but flown and maintained by IAF pilots and personnel. The approval from the Defence Ministry to induct more advance attack helicopters means that the two Mi-25/35 flights under two helicopter units will soon be flown by Army Aviation pilots.
The IAF will induct the 22 brand new AH-64D Apache Block III attack helicopters from Boeing and, later, the Light Combat Helicopter.
The Defence Minister also reviewed the process of acquisition of artillery guns and asked the Army to reform it’s acquisition process. The Army has been told to step up infrastructure development in the North East. Infrastructure of ammunition storage systems will also be upgraded in the north-east region.
The Army has been told to prioritise weapons acquisition and focus on critical areas to plug existing gaps.
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