India intends to acquire another 71 Russian Mi-17V-5 helicopters, including 12 vehicles for the Ministry of Internal Affairs in addition to 80 ones, which have already been ordered, ARMS-TASS reports.
According to the source close to the Indian Ministry of Defense, negotiations on additional purchase of the helicopters have been conducted earlier. "At present the parties are waiting for the continuation of the negotiations on acquisition of additional batch of Мi-17V-5s, not only for Indian Ministry of Defense, but also for another agencies", - the source added.
Indian air forces have put into operation the first batch of Russian Мi-17V-5 helicopters. The contract on delivery of 80 vehicles of the type is assessed at $1,34 billion and it has been signed in 2008. The helicopters should be delivered by 2014. 21 of them have already been delivered to the customer, six more will be delivered by the end of March 2012.
Мi-17V-5 is the advanced modification of Мi-8МТ, developed using tactical employment experience. The helicopter is intended for transportation of cargo, troopers and suspended load. The armed version of Мi-17V-5 is intended for fire support of ground forces and troopers during grounding or evacuation and for precise bombing. The onboard defense provides protection from enemy air defense system.