1 minute readWhy India, not Russia, is supplying Russian-built helicopters to Afghanistan

Afghan Air Force Mi-17V5 | Photo: Russian Helicopters

Afghan Air Force Mi-17V5 | Photo: Russian Helicopters

The Economic Times reported earlier this week that India will, after all, be supplying four Mi-25 attack helicopters to Afghanistan, as had been previously reported by The Hindu.

So here’s a question: Why isn’t Afghanistan getting them from Russia, which is the original manufacturer?

This is complicated – the US Department of Defense ordered 63 Mi-17V5 helicopters for Afghanistan, against which there was considerable opposition from US politicians because of the sanctions against Russia and that a Russian and not US-built helicopter was being supplied to Afghanistan.

But later, further acquisition of the aircraft was cancelled after the Pentagon dropped the idea following political pressure in the US.

Russia will probably not object to the India supplying the aircraft partly because four isn’t a large number and the Mi-25 isn’t exactly a contemporary aircraft. Neither will the US. In fact, Russia has unveiled a prototype of an altogether new model of the aircraft, recently.

Earlier this year, India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) also delivered three Cheetal helicopters to Afghanistan.

So what do you think?