The United States State Department has approved sale of six AH-64E Apache attack helicopters along with support equioments to India. The Apache choppers are one of the most advanced multi-role combat helicopters which have advanced weapons systems and night-fighting features, manufactured by Boeing.
The total estimated cost of the deal is $930 million. The proposed sale also includes 180 Hellfire Longbow air-to-surface anti-armor missiles, 90 R-3 Hellfire II air-to-surface missiles, 200 Stinger air-to-air missiles; rockets, 30 mm cannons and ammunition.
It also includes simulators, communication equipment, spare and repair parts, training, engineering and other support. The prime contractors for the support sale will be Lockheed Martin, Longbow, Raytheon General Electric and Boeing.
The sale of Apache attack helicopters will strengthen India’s ability to defend its homeland and deter regional threats. It will increase in India’s defensive capability to counter ground-armored threats and modernise its armed forces. India will have no difficulty absorbing the helicopters and support equipment into its armed forces. Moreover, sale of these attack helicopters from US to India will not alter the basic military balance in the region.