April 24, 2017
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Strategic reach
India’s transport fleet and heavy lift capability

With China showcasing early this year two prototypes of heavy lift intercontinental range transport aircraft Y-20 alleged to be a copy of the C-17 Globemaster model, though little smaller and also working on 500 kms speed Blue Whale tilt rotor helicopter with a payload of 30 tons Indian air force seems to be years behind the strategic airlift capability of the Chinese PLAAF.

However, the IAF is trying to catch up with the world powers by acquiring the US manufactured Globemasters, the Super Hercules and the Chinook heavy lift helicopters.

The overall strength of the heavy lift aircrafts and helicopters indicate the strategic capabilities and the strategic intent of a country. The heavy lift aircraft extend the strategic reach of a country and IAF has been lacking these till this year. The C-17 Globemasters have just begun arriving this year on the IAF airbases and the IAF intends to extend the fleet from the already contracted 10 Globemasters to 16. IT also plans to increase the Super Hercules fleet by another six as mostly its Soviet origin transport fleet is now on the verge of retirem
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