IAF Needs Urgent Basic Trainer Procurement

Contributor:  Defence IQ Press
Posted:  09/16/2009  3:36:00 PM EDT
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Tags:   IAF | HPT-32 | Deepak

The Indian Air Force (IAF) is facing a crisis in its pilot training schedule after grounding its entire fleet of Hindustan Piston Trainer 32 (HPT-32) Deepak basic trainer aircraft following a series of fatal accidents.

Stage 1 of the IAF’s pilot training programme has been severely disrupted as a result, at a time when Stage 2 and 3 are also under pressure due to procurement delays. The IAF is now demanding the immediate procurement of 200 basic trainers from overseas to cope with the training crunch. In the meantime, state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)–which built the Deepak–may proceed with the design and construction of the single-engined Hindustan Turbo Trainer 40 (HTT-40), which it has proposed inducting by 2015.

Ten Deepaks have crashed over the past decade, the most recent coming on the 31st July. Stage 2 training is already being affected by the delay in the arrival of the replacement for the ageing Kiran, the HJT-36 intermediate jet trainer (IJT). The HJT-36 programme is four years behind schedule. The slow delivery of HAL-built Hawk 132s has also begun disrupting Stage 3 training. HAL has so far delivered just three Hawks to the IAF.

Defence IQ Press Contributor:   Defence IQ Press

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