India: Tension along LAC has reduced

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)

 

Tension along LAC has reduced, Rajnath Singh says in Arunachal Pradesh

The minister, who is on a two-day visit to Arunachal Pradesh, made the remark after visiting an Indian Army forward post at Bumla near the border with China and interacting with soldiers and officers there.

INDIA Updated: Nov 15, 2019 14:25 IST

Utpal Parashar
Utpal Parashar
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
Defence minister Rajnath Singh visited the Indian Army’s forward post at Bumla in Arunachal Pradesh on Friday
Defence minister Rajnath Singh visited the Indian Army’s forward post at Bumla in Arunachal Pradesh on Friday(twitter/@rajnathsingh)

Defence minister Rajnath Singh said on Friday that both the Indian Army and China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) have reduced tension on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) “despite perceptional differences”.

The minister, who is on a two-day visit to Arunachal Pradesh, made the remark after visiting an Indian Army forward post at Bumla near the border with China and interacting with soldiers and officers there.

“Despite perceptional differences on the boundary issue both the Indian Army and PLA have been sensible enough to reduce tensions on LAC. I congratulate the Indian Army for showing great maturity in all situations,” tweeted Singh.

Watch: Rajnath Singh visits Bum La pass, says no tension with Chinese Army at LAC

During his visit, the Union minister is taking stock of security preparations along the border with China. Beijing claims most of Arunachal Pradesh, which it calls South Tibet, to be part of its territory.

In September this year, Tapir Gao, a Bharatiya Janata Party lawmaker from Arunachal Pradesh had claimed that Chinese army personnel had entered India and built a temporary bridge over a stream.

The Indian Army denied there was any such thing in an official statement.

“Had a wonderful interaction with brave jawans and officers of the Indian Army. The army is securing India’s frontiers even in the most challenging environment,” Singh tweeted.

The defence minister would also inaugurate on Friday a 200-metre bridge on the Sisseri River connecting Pasighat and Roing in the northeastern state, which would reduce travel time between both places by nearly five hours.

Singh also visited the memorial of Subedar Joginder Singh, a Param Vir Chakra awardee who fought valiantly during the 1962 war with China before laying down his life, at Bumla.

Indian Army’s M777 regiment to get 3 made-in-India guns

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)

 

Indian Army’s M777 regiment to get 3 made-in-India guns

Of the 18 howitzers with which the army is raising its first regiment, 15 are being supplied by BAE Systems and three by its Indian partner Mahindra Defence, said the second official, also on condition of anonymity.

INDIA Updated: Nov 13, 2019 09:39 IST

Rahul Singh
Rahul Singh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
M777 Howitzer gun fires in the air at the formal induction of the major artillery gun systems including the K-9 Vajra, a self-propelled artillery gun and Composite Gun Towing Vehicle during a ceremony at Deolali artillery centre, in Nashik district on November 09, 2018.
M777 Howitzer gun fires in the air at the formal induction of the major artillery gun systems including the K-9 Vajra, a self-propelled artillery gun and Composite Gun Towing Vehicle during a ceremony at Deolali artillery centre, in Nashik district on November 09, 2018. (PTI File Photo)

The Indian Army’s first regiment of ultra-light howitzers is expected to consist of 15 ready-built M777s supplied by the US, and three locally built guns that will represent the country’s Make in India push for military hardware, two officials familiar with the move said.

The howitzers will be delivered to the army by the year-end, enabling the force to raise the first of its planned seven M777 regiments early next year, said one of the officials cited above who asked not to be named.

India ordered 145 howitzers from the US for $750 million in November 2016. As part of the deal, M777 manufacturer BAE Systems will supply 25 ready-built howitzers and the remaining 120 guns are being built locally in collaboration with Mahindra Defence Systems Limited under the Modi government’s Make in India initiative.

Also Watch | Huge turnout for Army recruitment rally in Samba days after J&K bifurcation

Huge turnout for Army recruitment rally in Samba days after J&K bifurcation
The Indian Army conducted a recruitment rally in Jammu and Kashmir.
Play

Unmute

Current Time 0:00
Duration 2:06
Loaded: 31.32%

Fullscreen

Of the 18 howitzers with which the army is raising its first regiment, 15 are being supplied by BAE Systems and three by its Indian partner Mahindra Defence, said the second official, also on condition of anonymity.

A spokesperson for Mahindra Defence declined to comment.

“The parallel induction of imported howitzers and the locally assembled ones serves the army’s interests. The rate of production will be higher and delivery faster under such an arrangement. Also, if there are any issues with the howitzers, the army can quickly reach out to the original equipment manufacturer and the Indian partner,” said Lieutenant General Subrata Saha (retd), who was the army’s deputy chief when the M777 deal was inked three years ago. The army is likely to get all the 145 howitzers by the end of 2021.

Saha also said that the M777s were an important part of the army’s field artillery rationalisation plan (FARP) as the guns were designed for flexible deployment in mountainous terrain.

The 155 mm/39-caliber howitzers can be sling-loaded to Boeing CH-47F (I) Chinook helicopters and swiftly deployed to high-altitude areas to provide accurate artillery fire support. India ordered 15 Chinook helicopters from the US for $1.18 billion in September 2015. Six of them have already been delivered.

The army is preparing to deploy its new M777s in eastern Arunachal Pradesh and the howitzers could prove to be a game-changer in the sector due to their tactical mobility, as reported by HT on October 7.

The howitzers have a range of 24-30 km.

The ~50,000-crore FARP lays down the road map for inducting new 155mm weaponry, including tracked self-propelled guns, truck-mounted gun systems, towed artillery pieces and wheeled self-propelled guns. The plan seeks to equip 169 artillery regiments with a mix of nearly 3,000 guns over the next eight to 10 years.

The M777s were the first artillery guns to be ordered after the Bofors scandal unfolded in the late 1980s. These howitzers have superior tactical mobility as they are made from titanium and aluminum alloys and weigh only 4,218 kg, which is half the weight of conventional artillery guns deployed in the northern and eastern sectors.

Apart from the M777s, some of the other Make in India projects include local production of AK-203 assault rifles and K9 VAJRA-T artillery guns.

India: 18 terrorists killed, JeM launch pads destroyed in PoK strikes by Indian army

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)

 

18 terrorists killed, JeM launch pads destroyed in PoK strikes by Indian army: Officials

The officials added that all the terror launch pads housing Jaish-e-Mohammed and other jihadists were destroyed in the pin-point artillery firing by the Indian army – retaliatory action to indiscriminate and unprovoked Pakistani firing along the Line of Control.

INDIA Updated: Oct 23, 2019 09:25 IST

Shishir Gupta
Shishir Gupta
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The site of Indian Army’s assault on Pakistani terror camps.
The site of Indian Army’s assault on Pakistani terror camps.(Photo: HT/ Special arrangement)

Officials in Indian security agencies that have assessed the impact of the Indian Army’s artillery assault on terror launch pads in Neelum Valley and three other places in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK), said on condition of anonymity that at least 18 terrorists were killed along with 16 Pak Army personnel on October 19 and 20. The army hasn’t confirmed the number of dead. Hindustan Times couldn’t independently authenticate the numbers.

The officials added that all the terror launch pads housing Jaish-e-Mohammed and other jihadists were destroyed in the pin-point artillery firing by the Indian army – retaliatory action to indiscriminate and unprovoked Pakistani firing along the Line of Control.

On Sunday, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat briefed Defence Minister Rajnath Singh twice about the Indian Army fire assault on PoK launch pads with the latter congratulating the former on the resolute action, the officials said. Asking General Rawat to go public on the artillery firing, Rajnath Singh said that while no terror launch pads should be spared, care should be taken to ensure that the innocent civilian population is not targeted.

Also Watch l ‘Our forces can give befitting response to our enemies’: Rajnath Singh

Play Video

Defence ministry officials said on condition of anonymity that ammunition and ration depots of the Pakistani Army were also destroyed by 155 mm guns using precision long range ammunition. While four launch pads in Neelum Valley were hit, launch pads in Jura, Athamuqam and Kundalshahi were also decimated in the fire onslaught on wee hours of October 20, they added. The Indian response came after the Pakistani Army targeted Indian positions and civil localities in Karnah sector killing two Indian soldiers and one civilian on Saturday night.

Hindustantimes

On Sunday, the army mounted the artillery attack in retaliation to ceasefire violations meant to assist infiltrators, inflicting heavy terrorist casualties.

The counter-offensive measures come weeks after multiple intelligence agencies warned the government that at least 60 terrorists have infiltrated into Jammu and Kashmir recently and another 500 are waiting to infiltrate, according to the army.

Hindustantimes

Ground intelligence and communication intercepts from PoK suggests that the jihadists and their army handlers were taken by surprise by the pin-point firing and the fact that the Indian Army knew about their locations. “Intelligence about 18 terrorists and 16 army personnel killed have been corroborated on ground with hard intelligence. Many have been injured,” said a senior Indian Army official who asked not to be named.

“ By taking out the launch pads near LoC in PoK, we have sent a message that retaliation will come if any infiltration attempt is made in Jammu and Kashmir,” said a senior official in a security agency.

First Published: Oct 22, 2019 23:43 IST

India-China boundary talks could be delayed

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)

 

India-China boundary talks could be delayed

The reasons for the likely change in the schedule for the talks between the Special Representatives, and the change in the top Indian general’s visit to China, could not immediately be ascertained.

INDIA Updated: Sep 04, 2019 08:16 IST

Rezaul H Laskar and Rahul Singh
Rezaul H Laskar and Rahul Singh

Hindustan Times, New Delhi
India and China have held more than 20 rounds of talks under the mechanism to settle the dispute over the 3,488-km Line of Actual Control (LAC).
India and China have held more than 20 rounds of talks under the mechanism to settle the dispute over the 3,488-km Line of Actual Control (LAC).(HT FILE)

Talks between India and China on the boundary issue under the framework of the Special Representatives (SR) mechanism are likely to be delayed, four people familiar with developments said on Tuesday.

To be sure, the two sides had not formally announced any dates for the talks under the SR mechanism. But the people cited above said that China’s foreign minister Wang Yi was expected to visit New Delhi next week for talks with National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval.

The Indian Army’s Udhampur-based Northern Army commander, Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, is also not going for a visit to China as scheduled, the people said. The visit was expected to take place this month, but the exact dates could not be immediately ascertained. The Northern Army command is the nerve-centre for counter-insurgency operations in Jammu & Kashmir and is also responsible for guarding the Line of Control (LoC).

Also watch| Jaishankar meets Chinese minister amid Beijing’s objection to Art 370 move

 

Jaishankar meets Chinese minister amid Beijing’s objection to Art 370 move
India’s External Affairs Minister, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, is in China.
Pause

Unmute

Current Time 0:05
Duration 3:00
Loaded: 22.04%

Fullscreen

The reasons for the likely change in the schedule for the talks between the Special Representatives, and the change in the top Indian general’s visit to China, could not immediately be ascertained.

HT has learnt, however, that the SR talks would be held in the near future.

India and China have held more than 20 rounds of talks under the mechanism to settle the dispute over the 3,488-km Line of Actual Control (LAC).

The countries are also continuing with preparations for the second informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping, expected to be held during October 11-12.

The people cited above said the two sides were looking at four possible venues – Chennai, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Varanasi – for the informal summit. The first informal summit between Modi and Xi was held in Wuhan last year and helped put bilateral ties on an even keel after the 73-day military standoff at Doklam in 2017.

Wang Yi, who is also a state councillor, is set to visit Islamabad on September 7 for a trilateral Afghanistan-China-Pakistan meeting, people aware of the matter in China said. He will then travel to Kathmandu on September 8 to prepare for President Xi Jinping’s proposed visit to Nepal in October.

Meanwhile, China’s new envoy to India, Sun Weidong, said on Tuesday that the two countries should work to reduce their differences and settle their disputes through talks. “For neighbors and major countries, differences are hard to avoid. The key is to properly handle them,” he told a welcome reception hosted by the Chinese embassy.

First Published: Sep 04, 2019 00:46 IST

India: Pakistan launched 8 Attacks On Indian Troops At Kashmir LOC In July/August

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)

 

Pakistan launched 8 BAT attacks at LoC in July-August

Between July 13 and August 4, the Pakistan Army’s Mujahid and special services group (SSG) battalions, along with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) operatives, launched eight actions from the Uri to the Gurez and Tangdhar sectors.

INDIA Updated: Aug 05, 2019 07:35 IST

Shishir Gupta
Shishir Gupta
New Delhi
Between July 13 and August 4, the Pakistan Army’s Mujahid and special services group (SSG) battalions, along with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) operatives, launched eight actions from the Uri to the Gurez and Tangdhar sectors.
Between July 13 and August 4, the Pakistan Army’s Mujahid and special services group (SSG) battalions, along with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) operatives, launched eight actions from the Uri to the Gurez and Tangdhar sectors.(AFP)

The Pakistan Army has been targeting the Line of Control (LoC) in north Kashmir, launching eight attempts by border action teams (BAT) to strike Indian Army personnel deployed in the region even as Islamabad prepares to accuse India of military aggression at the UN General Assembly session next month, according to people familiar with the developments.

Between July 13 and August 4, the Pakistan Army’s Mujahid and special services group (SSG) battalions, along with Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) operatives, launched eight actions from the Uri to the Gurez and Tangdhar sectors. This led to India retaliating through depth shelling. Pakistan is estimated to have lost nine soldiers or terrorists in the incidents, while Indian Army sustained one loss at Machchil sector in the last week of July, the people cited above said.

According to senior military commanders based in Jammu & Kashmir and diplomats in New Delhi, the Pakistan foreign secretary briefed envoys from the US, France, Russia and China, accusing India of escalating tensions along the LoC by using prohibited cluster bombs.

The Indian Army, while reiterating its right to respond, has strongly denied it has used cluster bomb.

The use of cluster bombs, which emit deadly exploding shrapnel, or smaller bomblets, is prohibited under several international treaties.

One of the people cited above said that, according to reports reaching India, the Pakistan has already mobilised troops along the LoC as well as put its air force on operational alert in Pak-occupied Kashmir and the northern areas.

After BAT actions being repelled from northern Kashmir, intelligence reports indicate that at least four SSG teams — of four to five commandos — are camping in Bhimber, Kotli, Kel, and Lipa brigade headquarters of the Pakistan Army with the objective of carrying out BAT, sniper or IED action against Indian troops in the Bhimber, Kota, Lipa, and Neelum sectors south of Pir Panjal.

According to a Pakistan watcher who asked not to be named, Rawalpindi GHQ have been emboldened after the mediation offer by US President Donald Trump, and decided to escalate military tensions on the LoC so that the international community (particularly Washington) puts pressure on India to talk to Islamabad. “Pakistan will again rake up Kashmir in UNGA, as in the past, when the session starts on September 17. Since it knows that India will never accept mediation, the objective would be to ensure that PM Narendra Modi talks to Pakistan,” said a senior Indian diplomat.

PM Modi is also expected to be in the US for the UNGA in New York and a bilateral meeting with Trump in Washington.

The BAT action in north Kashmir began just before Pakistan PM Imran Khan was scheduled to go to Washington last month, and increased in frequency since then. There was an IED blast at the LoC near Uri on July 13; three BAT actions in Tangdhar on July 14, 21 and August 2; two BAT actions in Machchil sector on July 27 and August 4; and one BAT action in Gurez on July 30.

On August 13, the BAT action at Manjit Forward Post held by the 2 Assam Regiment was heavily retaliated by the Indian defenders as a result of which five to seven Pakistani personnel lost their lives.

First Published: Aug 05, 2019 05:46 IST

India/China: Trade point planned at India-China LAC

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF INDIA’S HINDUSTAN TIMES)

 

Trade point planned at India-China LAC

Although the Indian Army’s spokesperson did not respond to queries, three officials familiar with the matter said on condition of anonymity that the army has cleared the opening of the post, and that it is up to the government now.

INDIA Updated: Jul 19, 2019 07:09 IST

Sudhi Ranjan Sen
Sudhi Ranjan Sen
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
India news,China,India
Image for representation(HT file photo)

The Indian Army has approved the opening of a new trading point with China at Dumchelle in Ladakh, the third such along India’s disputed, albeit peaceful 3,488-km border with China in a confidence building measure ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s October visit.

Although the Indian Army’s spokesperson did not respond to queries, three officials familiar with the matter said on condition of anonymity that the army has cleared the opening of the post, and that it is up to the government now.

Hindustan Times learns that the trading post could open as soon as the end of the year and that work has already started on the customs check point and the road to it. The only thing left is for the Cabinet Committee on Security to sign off.

Dumchelle is in Southern Ladakh, and is strategically located between Chushul , one of the five designated Border Personnel Meeting (BPM) meeting points between the Indian and Chinese armies, and Demchok in Southern Ladakh.

The two other recognised trading points with China are Lipulekh in Uttrakhand and Nathu La in Sikkim. Predetermined, locally made items are traded through these points with an aim of boosting the local economy.

President Xi is scheduled to be in India in October for an informal summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Opening up another trading point along the disputed Line of Actual Control (LAC) would be a major confidence building measure, analysts said.

Although the Dumchelle trading point will be new, trade at the border town between residents of Ladakh and the Tibetans from the other side has a long history. Goods are bought and sold at Dumchelle regularly. In addition, there is a three-week-long fair at Dumchelle where locals from both sides participate.

In the past, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has even used the hotline, which connects military commanders on both sides of the border and which is used to sort out minor issues, to discuss dates of the fair. “It is an informal arrangement between the two sides,” a senior serving Indian Army officer said.

“It is a traditional trade route. In the past, the army has written to the government advising it to either completely stop the trade or formalise the exchange,” a government official added.

The current trade through Dumchelle is informal and designating it a trading point will automatically lead to “supervision of the goods flowing through this area. Also, there could be revenue implications for the government,” this person said. “Ladakh is flooded with Chinese made goods, much of which is traded through this particular point.”

India-China ties which hit a low during the 73-day long stand-off between the armies of the two countries in the Doklam plateau in Sikkim in 2017 warmed after the historic informal summit at Wuhan between Prime Minister Modi and President Xi in April 2018. Both leaders agreed to give “strategic” guidance to the respective militaries to reduce border tensions.

Nonetheless, caution on either side is understandable. The LAC is not demarcated. To address this, the two countries have agreed to elaborate mechanism that includes banner drills and communication between local commanders through established “hotlines” to ensure minor issues do not escalate into major ones.

First Published: Jul 19, 2019 06:58 IST

Army officials reach out to veteran who was declared foreigner by tribunal

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES OF INDIA)
(THIS SOUNDS LIKE INDIA’S MILITARY INTELLIGENCE IS AS SCREWED UP AS IT IS HERE IN THE U.S.)(I CAN’T HELP BUT WONDER IF INDIA’S VA MEDICAL SYSTEM IS AS BIG A FRAUD ON THEIR SERVICE CONNECTED DISABLED VETERANS AS THE U.S. VERSION IS. I SURE HOPE NOT BECAUSE THE FRAUD IN OUR SYSTEM THAT IS LAID ON OUR DISABLED VETERANS BY THE VA IS BEYOND SICKENING)(oped: oldpoet56)

Army officials reach out to veteran who was declared foreigner by tribunal

After the tribunal in Kamrup Rural district declared him a ‘foreigner’ on May 23, Sanaullah, 52, who has been serving as sub-inspector with the border organisation since retirement from the Indian Army, was detained last week by his own colleagues.

INDIA Updated: Jun 02, 2019 11:36 IST

Sadiq Naqvi
Sadiq Naqvi
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
NRC,foreigner tribunal,indian army
Based upon an inquiry report conducted by the border organisation of Assam Police in 2008, which identified Sanaullah as a labourer and marked as a suspected illegal immigrant.(PTI)

A day after the author of an inquiry report which labelled an ex-Indian Army subedar a ‘foreigner’ told a local channel in the northeast that it was a case of mistaken identity, Indian Army officials reached out to the detained man, Mohammed Sanaullah’s family, offering support.

Based upon an inquiry report conducted by the border organisation of Assam Police in 2008, which identified Sanaullah as a labourer and marked as a suspected illegal immigrant, his case was referred to the foreigners tribunal, a quasi-judicial body which adjudicates on cases of illegal immigrants identified either by Assam Police or the Election Commission of India (ECI).

After the tribunal in Kamrup Rural district declared him a ‘foreigner’ on May 23, Sanaullah, 52, who has been serving as sub-inspector with the border organisation since retirement from the Indian Army, was detained last week by his own colleagues at the border organisation and sent to a detention centre.

“I want to see my husband before we celebrate Eid. This is what I told the army officers, the ex-army men and the public who have been reaching out to me,” said Sanima Begum, Sanaullah’s wife.

The hopes of the family, however, rest on the writ petition filed in the high court on Saturday against the tribunal’s order declaring him a foreigner, which Sanaullah’s lawyers say, may come up for hearing this week.

Joshi Narain Dutt, director of Assam Directorate of Sainik Welfare, who has been following up on the developments, said the family will have to seek legal recourse (which it has done, by moving the HC) but that the DSW is “offering broad guidance.”

Also read | NRC: Ensure fair procedure adopted

According to Sanima Begum, Joshi and a group of ex-servicemen met the family on Saturday and promised support. “If after 30 years of service by my husband, the army will not come forward to help, who else would ?” said Sanima Begum.

Another army official Hindustan Times spoke to, said they will not be able to help the family directly unless they received orders from their superiors.

However, he dismissed the possibility of an illegal immigrant getting appointed in the Army. “In 1987, when Sanaullah was appointed, police verification report must have verified his antecedents,” the official said.

A senior official at the headquarters of the border organisation said a report has been sought from the district officials on the case. “It is possible that the local field official filed an erroneous inquiry report,” this official said.

First Published: Jun 02, 2019 07:26 IST

Guns Continue To Roar On LoC In Jammu, Rajouri  

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE KASHMIR OBSERVER)

 

Guns Continue To Roar On LoC In Jammu, Rajouri

Authorities have shut 72 schools along the LoC in Rajouri district and in Mendhar sector of Poonch district as a precautionary measure.


Jammu—Indian and Pakistani Wednesday troops exchanged heavy fire on LoC in Sunderbani, Nowshera and Khour sectors of Rajouri and Jammu districts.

A defense spokesman said the Pakistan Army violated the ceasefire agreement around 1030 hours today in Nowshera, Kalal and Sunderbani sectors along the Line of Control in Rajouri district.

Pakistani troops also resorted to ceasefire violations in Chakla and Baldoo areas in Khour sector late last night, police said.

“(The Indian) Army is retaliating effectively”, they said.

Yesterday, the Pakistan Army shelled forward posts and civilian areas along the LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts of Jammu and Kashmir, injuring two jawans of the Border Security Force.

Authorities have shut 72 schools along the LoC in Rajouri district and in Mendhar sector of Poonch district as a precautionary measure.

Ceasefire violations along the LoC and the International Border in Jammu and Kashmir have left 21 people, including 12 security personnel, dead and more than 80 others, mostly civilians, injured this year.

Though no ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops was reported along the IB since January 22, intermittent shelling has taken place along the LoC.

Be part of Open Journalism

At Kashmir Observer we pride ourselves for being open, honest and unbiased. If you have noticed we haven’t put up a paywall unlike many news organisations, – as we want to keep our journalism open. We believe journalism should be open, fearless and unbiased. Open information helps with informed decisions.

Journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce, despite all the hardships we still do it, because we believe our perspective matters – because it might well be your perspective, too. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying and advertising revenues across the media industry is falling fast.

If everyone who reads our reporting, helps to support it, our future would be much more secure and we will be able to keep our and your perspective going. So if we may ask, we ask your help in keeping the Kashmir Observer’s journalism fair and square.

India’s Army And Air force Grounding 280 Choppers For Safety Checks

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HINDUSTAN TIMES NEWS PAPER)

HT Exclusive| Army, IAF ground 280 Cheetah and Chetak choppers for safety checks

INDIA Updated: Dec 07, 2016 07:09 IST

Rahul Singh, Hindustan Times
More than 280 Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, lifeline of troops in high-altitude areas including Siachen glacier, would fly only after Hindustan Aeronautics Limited would carry out a comprehensive safety check. (HT File Photo)
The army and air force have grounded their ageing fleets of light-utility helicopters, concerned if the machines were fit to fly after three army aviators were killed in a crash in West Bengal a week ago.More than 280 Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, lifeline of troops in high-altitude areas including Siachen glacier, would fly only after Hindustan Aeronautics Limited would carry out a comprehensive safety check of each of the machines, a defence ministry official told HT.The design of the helicopters is more than 50 years old and their air worthiness is being questioned after a string of mishaps in recent years.A group of wives of serving officers met defence minister Manohar Parrikar in 2015, demanding the helicopters be retired.

After the November 30 crash, the army grounded 150 choppers and the IAF around 130. Though the navy operated 40 such choppers they weren’t grounded, a naval officer said.

The Cheetahs play a crucial role in supporting the army on the Siachen glacier, one of the world’s highest battlefields, flying at more than 20,000 feet.

The unavailability of these choppers could hamper operations in forward areas. “The HAL will clear the choppers in batches. It’s not as if the entire fleet will be unavailable for a long time,” an IAF officer said.

The military would use the Dhruv advanced light helicopters and Cheetal choppers (a re-engined version of Cheetah built by HAL).

HAL licence-produced 625 Cheetah and Chetak helicopters. It no longer builds them but is responsible for their maintenance and repair, a cause for concern. HAL chief T Suvarna Raju did not respond to phone calls.

Nine personnel were killed in six accidents involving these machines during 2012-15.

“The Cheetah still has a lot of juice in it. As long as servicing and maintenance is okay, there’s nothing wrong with the chopper,” said air vice-marshal Manmohan Bahadur (retired).

HAL in 1970 signed an agreement with French aerospace firm Aerospatiale to produce Cheetahs, eight years after it tied up with another French firm, Sud-Aviation (now Airbus), to manufacture Chetaks.

In August 2014, India scrapped a Rs 6,000-crore project to import light utility helicopters to replace Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, the third time the procurement was scrapped due to corruption allegations and technical issues.

The Kamov-226T light utility choppers, to be built with Russia, are to replace these helicopters. However, the $1-billion programme is yet to kick off and the military may have to wait several years for the new machines.

Diary of a Gay Dad. I am a full time dad to five young children.

People family relationships children cooking jam making and being a gay dad

المعلومات في جميع المجلات

هذا الموقع يمكنه الكلام في ما يدور في العالم

The Common Sense Theologian

Theology, Politics, Life, Education, Family, Home, Kids, Marriage, Outdoors

India Travel BLog

A Blog about Indian Tourism

Danny's wor(l)d

have a great read here!!

%d bloggers like this: