Indian Air Force inducts four heavy-lift Chinook helicopter Photograph:( ANI )
'Induction of Chinook will be a game changer the way Rafale is going to be in the fighter fleet,' Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa said.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) inducted the first unit of four Chinook heavy-lift choppers on Monday in Chandigarh, where the helicopters have been deployed. Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa presided over the induction ceremony.
''Country faces multiple security challenges, we require vertical lift capability across a diversified terrain. Chinook has been procured with India specific enhancements; it's a national asset,'' Dhanoa said.
''Chinook helicopter can carry out military operations, not only in day but during night too; another unit will be created for the east in Dinjan (Assam). Induction of Chinook will be a game changer the way Rafale is going to be in the fighter fleet,'' Dhanoa added.
India has paid close to $1.5 billion for 15 of the helicopters which will be used to deploy troops and machinery at high-altitude locations.
India was officially handed over the first of the Chinook helicopters on February 1. The handover took place at Boeing's facility in Philadelphia in the presence of Indian ambassador to the US Harsh Shringla.
The Chinook is operated by 18 other defence forces around the world.
Large sections of the Chinook fuselage, interestingly, are being manufactured in India.
(With inputs from agencies)