Highlights

  • Indian Air Force withdrew tender for Mi-17 V5 choppers: report
  • Plan cancelled in favour of acquiring indigenous choppers: report
  • Decision taken before Russia-Ukraine war broke out in Feb: report

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India cancels Russian military chopper deal, says report. Watch why IAF won't buy 48 Mi-17 V5s

Coincidentally, it was a Mi-17 chopper which crashed and killed India first Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat in December 2021.

India has reportedly cancelled a plan to buy almost 50 Russian military helicopters. The Indian Air Force has dropped a plan to purchase 48 Mi-17 V5 medium lift choppers, as per news agency ANI.

The tender was withdrawn in view of the Narendra Modi government's push for 'Atmanirbhar Bharat', or self-reliant India. The decision was taken before the Russia-Ukraine war broke out, defence sources were quoted as saying in the report.

India has a large fleet of Mi-17 V5 and Mi-17 choppers, and these are reportedly used to fly VVIPs like the President and Prime Minister of India. Coincidentally, it was a Mi-17 chopper which crashed and killed India first Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat in December 2021.

ALSO WATCH: Amid Ukraine war, India receives Russian S-400 missile system simulators for training squadron: report

The Mi-17s are also reportedly used heavily at Siachen, eastern Ladakh, and high-altitude areas in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.

Instead of buying more Mi-17s, the Indian Air Force wants to focus on encouraging the indigenous medium-lift chopper programme, as per the ANI report.

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