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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is gearing up for mass production of the LCH Prachand light attack helicopter, following a Ministry of Defence (MoD) request for a proposal (RFP) for 156 units. This move signifies a significant push towards self-reliance in India’s defense sector.

While the initial 15 Limited Series Production (LSP) LCHs had an indigenous content of 45% by value, HAL aims to significantly increase this figure to 55% for the series production variant. This ambitious target reflects India’s commitment to reducing dependence on foreign suppliers for critical defense equipment.

A major step forward is HAL’s acquisition of complete Transfer of Technology (ToT) for the Shakti 1H1 engines powering the Prachand. This agreement with Safran, the French engine manufacturer, includes core technology for engine manufacturing. This ToT will push the indigenous content of the LCH beyond 60% by value.

The Shakti engine also powers the highly successful ALH Dhruv helicopters, with nearly 400 units in operation. The ToT for the Shakti engine will benefit not only the LCH program but also the Dhruv fleet, promoting standardization and streamlining maintenance procedures.

HAL’s commitment to increasing indigenous content in the LCH Prachand is a positive development for India’s defense aspirations. This not only strengthens national security but also paves the way for a more robust and self-reliant domestic defense industry.