The United States on Tuesday approved the sale of 24 submarine-hunting MH-60R Seahawk Multi-Mission helicopters to India. The entire deal is of $2.6 billion. As per reports, the US’ (DSCA) received the approval from the State Department for the sale and the Congress was notified about it. The helicopters are nicknamed “Romeo”. These helicopters will give India the capability to perform anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions and also perform peacetime operations like search and rescue. India Signs $3-Billion Deal With Russia to Get Akula Class Nuclear Submarine, Chakra-III on Lease.
According to reports, the deal is yet to be concluded. The negotiations on offset clause are still to take place. The DSCA said that the proposed sale would support the foreign policy and national security of the US by helping to strengthen the US-Indian strategic relationship. The agency further added that the deal would improve the security of a major defensive partner which continues to be an important force for political stability, peace and economic progress in the Indo-Pacific and South Asia region. Defence Acquisition Committee Approves Rs 3,000 Crore Procurement Including Brahmos, ARVs For Arjun MBTs.
These helicopters are manufactured by Sikorsky-Lockheed Martin, under the US foreign military sales programme. The Navy will replace the fleet of Sea King Mk 42B/C and Ka-28 helicopters. In November last year, India issued a ‘letter of request’ to the US. These helicopters will be armed with torpedoes and missiles for robust anti-submarine warfare capabilities.
Presently, the Navy operates 11 Kamov-28 and 17 Sea King ASW helicopters, but only four Kamove-28 and around five Sea King ASW are in flying condition. The MH-60 Seahawk helicopter is the world’s most advanced maritime helicopter.
(Picture Courtesy: Twitter/@MarcusReports)