Indian MoD press release
As the rotor blades of the versatile helicopter cut through the air, aircraft were ceremonially welcomed into ANC with a traditional water cannon salute. The induction marks a continuing increase in the capabilities of the A&N Command in the past two decades of its raising as India’s only joint theatre command.
The ALH MK III aircraft is manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and represents a tremendous leap towards self-reliance in the field of military aircraft, in line with the government’s push towards ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’. Till date, over 300 of these aircraft have been delivered by HAL and are being flown by the Armed Forces. Amongst its variants, the MK III variant is a maritime role variant encompassing state-of-the-art sensors and weapons that add punch to India’s prowess at sea.
The ALH MK III aircraft with its glass cockpit, Shakti engines, advanced Maritime Patrol Radar, Electro–optical payload and Night Vision Device will act as a force multiplier in keeping India’s far eastern seaboard and Island territories safe. The state-of-the-art aircraft has multirole capabilities including maritime surveillance, support for Special Forces, medical evacuations besides search and rescue roles.
Speaking on the occasion, Lt General Ajai Singh termed the induction as a boost to the security of Andaman & Nicobar. He added that the induction is a symbol of the country’s resolve of being self-reliant in its security and maintaining peace in this region.
Naval News comments:
As previously reported by Naval News, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) handed over three Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH MK III) to the Indian Navy and two ALHs to the Indian Coast Guard in February 2021 and three more in June 2021.
The Indian Navy commissioned its first Dhruv (Mk I) squadron in November 2013. HAL is under contract to deliver 16 ALH Mk III, an improved version equipped with Shakti-1H engines, new electronic warfare (EW) suite and warning systems, automatic chaff and flare dispensers, and improved vibration control system.
The contract involves integration of 19 major systems with the existing ALH MK III that includes IFF MKXII & ATC Xpdr with ADS-B Out, V/UHF communication system, traffic alert and collision avoidance (TCAS-I), SAR Homer system, automatic deployable emergency locator transmitter (ADELT), loud hailer, radio altimeter, rescue basket, medical intensive care unit (MICU), IADS system, AFCS, digital video recording system (SSDVR), automatic identification system (AIS), high intensity search light (HISL), pressure refueling system, control grip, EO POD Rev III, surveillance radar system and 12.7 mm gun system…