rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » US offers 245 Stinger missiles to India

US offers 245 Stinger missiles to India

October 11, 2012 16:11 IST

The United States is offering 245 Stinger missiles to India as part of a weapons package for the Apache attack choppers being acquired by the Air Force.

"Two hundred and forty five air-to-air Stinger missiles and 56 launchers are included in the weapons package for the Apache helicopters," said officials of Raytheon, which manufactures the missiles.

"The Stinger complements the advanced performance of the Apache by providing the IAF with the critical air-to-air defence capability," they said.

India has selected the American Apache helicopter for its requirement of 22 attack helicopters which will have both air-to-ground and air-to-air roles in the service.

"Yes, Apache is final now," IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne had recently told a press conference when asked if the service was procuring the American choppers. The two sides are at present negotiating the contract.

The American helicopter edged out the Russian Mi-28 in the race for the IAF contract.

The surface-to-air version of the Stinger missile is widely credited for the collapse of Russian helicopter fleet in Afghan war in 1980s and was also used by Pakistani troops to bring down an IAF Mi-17 helicopter during the Kargil war in 1999.

Commenting on its relations with Indian armed forces, Raytheon said it was "providing advanced air traffic management AutoTrac technology solution for the IAF" as part
of Modernisation of Air Field Infrastructure project.

Under the MAFI programme, India is planning to upgrade 30 military air fields to enable them to carry out night operations and operate large-bodied planes such as the C-17 heavy-lift transport aircraft.

© Copyright 2013 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.