Hindustan Aeronautics has received approval to manufacture 32 Dhruv Mk III advanced light helicopters, to be divided equally between the Indian navy and the country’s coastguard.

Approved by the Indian government’s Defence Acquisition Council, the deal is worth around $1.19 billion, also including spare parts, maintenance and in-service support.

The Indian navy already operate eight Dhruv rotorcraft, while the coastguard has four, and the first navy squadron to be used for search and rescue and armed patrol tasks was commissioned last November.

Hindustan Aeronautics has delivered almost 150 Dhruv helicopters to India’s armed services and paramilitary forces since 2002, the majority flown by its air force and army.

Source: Flight International