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Aero India 2023

Dhruv chopper likely to be deployed on-board INS Vikramaditya

ALH Dhruv. An Indian Navy photo

PANAJI (PTI): Indigenously-built Dhruv helicopter is likely to be deployed on India's largest warship, the Russian-origin aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, for carrying out the role of detecting hostile submarines.

If inducted, the Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) will be the first indigenous system to be integrated on the warship, which so far operates only imported aircraft such as the MiG 29K naval combat fighters and the Kamov-31 helicopters.

The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited-built ALH Dhruv is undergoing trials for carrying out the role of detecting hostile submarines using systems developed by the DRDO, defence officials said.

The system was put under trial at Vishakhapatnam and would be tried further before any final decision is taken on deploying the twin-engine chopper on board the carrier, they said.

The chopper was used last Saturday to ferry senior Defence Ministry and Special Protection Group officials from a naval base in Goa to the INS Vikramaditya deployed far from the shore in the Arabian Sea during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the largest warship of the Navy.

The twin-engine chopper has been developed by the HAL with support from European firms which provide engines for the 5.5 tonne machine.

The Dhruv is also part of the Coast Guard inventory which uses it for search and rescue operations in coastal areas.

The chopper was used extensively by the IAF and the Army to carry out disaster relief operations in flood and landslide hit Uttarakhand last year.

It has already been inducted in significant numbers in all three forces and has also been inducted in the paramilitary forces.

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