Indian Air Force (IAF) will soon deploy two squadrons of Apache Attack Helicopters at Pathankot and Jorhat in the east. The infrastructure for housing and operating the helicopters is already completed and the planes which will be coming from the United States of America will be housed at these two bases. This is the first time that American helicopter gunship has been given to India by the USA, as earlier India was only operating Russian helicopters the MI- 25 and 35 for more than three decades but these machines are becoming obsolete and Indian government because of close military ties with the USA, has opted for the Apache attack helicopter.

Times News Channel reported this news.

Induction of the gunships

Jorhat, where one of the squadrons will be located is an American base which was built during World War II, to help operate the US air force bombers as they went on missions against the Japanese in China. Pathankot airfield is right on the border with Pakistan and the helicopters will be used to counter Jihadists entering from Pakistan into India in the Kashmir Valley. These gunships have cost over 22 billion dollars and the deal has been in the pipeline for the last three years.

Edge over China

China and Pakistan are both wary of the induction of the attack helicopters by the Indian Air Force. They have realized that India and the United States are into a strategic relationship and after almost 5 decades the IAF will be severing its Russian connection and opting for American aircraft.

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The induction of these gunships in the region will give an edge to the Indian Army in operations against China And Pakistan. The IAF has also purchased the Chinook helicopter which will be positioned in the Punjab.

Closer cooperation with the USA

The Americans have already supplied the C 130, heavy lift transport aircraft's which are based in Hindon, close New Delhi. These deals are a sign of the close military cooperation between India and America. In addition, the manufacturers of the F- 16 supersonic jet fighter have proposed, the shifting of the entire assembly line of the aircraft to India. For the last 5 decades, India operated only Russian aircraft., as the left leaning Defence Minister Krishna Menon was pro-Russia and Indian prime minister at that time Indira Gandhi also, inked a 20-year defense pact with Russia in 1970.

Geopolitical scenario

The Geopolitical scenario has changed and the USA is searching for a counter to China as none of the Southeast Asian countries, except India can match China. India and the USA have already signed the military logistic agreement and recently Americans carried out the biggest ever Navy exercise along with Japan and India in the Bay of Bengal. The Modi government has reversed the age old Indian policy of aligning with Russia, especially after Moscow boosted its ties with China.