36th RAISING DAY OF ARMY AVIATION CORPS
The year 2021 marks the 36th Raising Day of the Army Aviation Corps. The Army Aviation Corps is an intrinsic part of Indian Army. This was formed on 1st of November in the year 1986.
The corps is commanded by a Director General at the Army Headquarters in New Delhi. The DG is of the rank of Lieutenant General.
ROLE OF ARMY AVIATION CORPS
The pilots of the Army Aviation Corps are drawn from Combat Arms and they can be Artillery Officers too. The flight of attack helicopters such as Mil Mi-25/Mi-35 and HAL Rudra are under the operational control of Indian Army and are flown by the Indian Air Force.
Helicopters such as the HAL Chetak, HAL Cheetah and HAL Dhruv provide logistic support for the Indian Army in remote and inaccessible areas. The Army Aviation Corps also performs CSAR (COMBAT SEARCH AND RESCUE). Along with this CSAR they also perform artillery lift, combat transportation, logistics relief. Most importantly they are responsible for MEDEVAC (Military Prisoner Transportation and Medical Evacuation) in wartime and during natural disasters.
Army Aviation Corps candidates are trained at the Combat Army Aviation Training School (CATS) in Nashik; training was previously conducted at the School of Artillery in Deolali. A Cheetah helicopter simulator was installed at CATS to reduce training costs and pilot risk. The simulator exposes trainees to snow, rain, varied terrain, night flying, emergencies, and tactical manoeuvres.
In 1984, the Indian Army’s Northern Command inducted the HAL Cheetah during the Siachen Glacier conflict. Two years later, the Indian Air Force‘s Air Observation Post units were transferred to the Indian Army to form its Army Aviation Corps. With nine helicopter squadrons, the corps supported ground units by carrying men and material to the 70-kilometre (43 mi) Siachen Glacier until the 2003 ceasefire.
During the late-1980s Indian intervention in the Sri Lankan Civil War, the corps experienced jungle warfare. A unit of the Army Aviation Corps operated in Somalia as part of United Nations Operation in Somalia II from October 1993 to November 1994. During the operation, the corps flew over 2,000 hours accident-free with 100-percent serviceability in desert-like conditions. It also participated in the 1999 Kargil War.
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