Indian Coast Guard inducted indigenous ALH Mark-III aircraft, CG 867, into Coast Guard Region (East) at Chennai on 20 Jun 22.The aircraft was received at Coast Guard Air Station, Chennai with a traditional ‘water cannon salute’. Inspector General AP Badola, TM, Commander Coast Guard Region East, welcomed the aircraft and crew. By Positioning the ALH MK III at Chennai, the Coast Guard has achieved a multifold capability of Beyond Visual Range detection using the state of the art ETA V3+ radar integrated with long range imaging and identification using the Electro Optical Pad and Automatic Identification System. The aircraft additionally is equipped for carrying out target neutralisation, bringing to use its cabin mounted 12.7 mm Heavy Machine Gun. Through concerted aerial efforts, the state-of-the-art helicopter will address India’s multi-faceted marine interests within the Exclusive Economic Zone. The Squadron’s operations area will encompass entire Eastern Region, which faces series of challenges due to its strategic importance and geographical location. Inclusion of ALH MK III will boost the air arm of Indian Coast Guard Region East.
The induction of ALH Mk III aircraft represents a tremendous leap towards self-reliance in the field of Coast Guard aviation, in line with the government’s initiative towards ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’. Till date, 13 out of 16 of these aircraft have been delivered by M/s HAL to the ICG. The addition of a capable platform such as an ALH MK III would definitely enhance the unit’s operational footprint. This is the First ALH MK III aircraft to be positioned in Coast Guard Region East. Three more ALH will be added in the inventory of 840 Squadron (CG) shortly at Chennai.