Indian Army to retire Cheetah and Chetak helicopters due to safety concerns

Indian Army to retire Cheetah and Chetak helicopters due to safety concerns

The Indian Army has decided to retire its oldest light-utility helicopters, the Cheetah and Chetak, after a string of recent crashes.

According to Indian sources, the early variants of the Cheetah and Chetak fleet will be replaced by the locally-produced advanced light helicopter known as “Dhruv”.

In total, it is anticipated that 41 helicopters will be replaced with the above-mentioned advanced light helicopter. The proposal is set to be sent to the Indian Cabinet committee on security for approval.

The Indian Army and Air Force grounded their fleets of 280 light-utility helicopters last December, after three crewmen were killed in a crash.

The Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, which are used by troops in high-altitude areas, are currently going through a comprehensive safety check by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.

There are also reports that the Russian Kamov-226T light utility choppers will replace these helicopters. However, the $1 billion program is yet to kick off.

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