Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is back in news again and not for the right reasons. Barely a week after an HAL-upgraded Mirage 2000 crashed at its airport killing two Indian Air Force pilots, an Indian Army helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing in a potato filed near Bengaluru. News Nation was the first to capture the very moment when the chopper landed in the field. The officer flying the helicopter is said to be safe. According to an HT report, Rudra Mk IV armed chopper was also on an acceptance sortie just like Mirage 2000. The report said that the chopper made emergency landing due to â€˜hydraulic failure.â€™
In a statement, the HAL said that the chopper is now being flown back to its facility. The incident has added to the ongoing debate over the PSUâ€™s performance issue.Â Rudra, the armed choppers, are equipped with air-to-air missiles, 70 mm rockets and 20 mm turret guns, the HT report said.
On Tuesday, the chopper made the emergency landing in a field at Talghatpora Police Station Limit in Kanakpora Taluk at around 1:15pm. The initial reports say that the pilot is safe. No damage was reported to the chopper also.
The incident comes a day after Army chief General Bipin Rawat visited Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland to review the military preparedness. Arunachal Pradesh shares a 1,080 km border with China, 520 km border with Myanmar and 217-km border with Bhutan. The Army chief started his North East tour with a visit to the Spear Corps headquarters, Rangapahar Military Station, Dimapur in Nagaland on Sunday, they said. Gen Rawat reviewed the operational preparedness of Spear Corps and expressed satisfaction with the preparedness along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and lauded its people friendly counter-insurgency operations, officials said.
Meanwhile, there are reports that the Indian Army and the Indian Air Force are embroiled in a tussle over who will control the attack choppers. The issue includes the role of the Apache choppers. General Rawat has been quoted as saying that Apaches need to be grouped with the armyâ€™s strike formation. According to an Economic Times report, India has spent close to $3 billion for 15 Chinook and 22 Apache helicopters for the Indian Air Force. The army will separately get six Apaches, through an â€œoption clauseâ€ of the earlier deal.
The report also quoted General Rawat as saying that there will be â€˜anti-helicoptersâ€™ for the Indian Army. The Advanced Light Helicopter-Weapon system integrated will have missiles especially meant for anti-helicopter operations.