The Indian Navy is poised to mark a significant milestone in its defence modernization endeavour as it commissions the MH 60R Seahawk, a maritime variant of the Blackhawk helicopter, on March 6, 2024, at INS Garuda, Kochi. The induction of the Seahawks squadron, to be designated as INAS 334, signifies a pivotal moment in India’s maritime capabilities and strategic readiness. These helicopters are part of the 24-aircraft Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract signed with the US government in February 2020.

The commissioning of the Seahawks heralds a substantial enhancement in the Indian Navy’s maritime prowess. These helicopters are versatile, and designed for anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASuW), search and rescue (SAR), medical evacuation (MEDEVAC), and vertical replenishment (VERTREP). Rigorous testing under Indian Reference Atmosphere (IRA) conditions has ensured their seamless integration into the Fleet. Equipped with advanced weapons, sensors, and avionics, the Seahawks are aptly suited to address the Indian Navy’s diverse maritime security requirements, providing enhanced capabilities against both conventional and asymmetric threats.

The introduction of the MH 60R helicopter signifies a significant boost to India’s blue-water capabilities, extending the operational reach of the Navy and bolstering sustained naval operations across diverse maritime theatres. Deployed in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), the Seahawks will reinforce the Indian Navy’s maritime presence, acting as a deterrent against potential threats and fostering a secure and stable environment in this strategically vital area.

The commissioning of the Seahawks underscores the Indian Navy’s unwavering commitment to strengthening maritime security, in consonance with the Government of India’s overarching vision of ensuring Security And Growth for All in the Region.



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