India’s HAL training Nigerian Army pilots

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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has started flying training for Nigerian Army Aviation pilots, who have joined the Indian company’s Rotary Wing Academy.

HAL said six Nigerian Army officers were formally inducted into HAL’s Rotary Wing Academy on 5 July after a contract between HAL and the Nigerian Army was signed for phase one flying training.

The contract was signed in April this year by the Chief of Training of the Nigerian Army, Major General OF Azinta, and General Manager: Helicopter at HAL, BK Tripathy.

HAL established its Rotary Wing Academy in 2000 for the ab initio training of helicopter pilots. Training is carried out on Schweizer and Chetak and Dhruv helicopters.

The Nigerian Army has for years been trying to acquire its own helicopters instead of relying on Nigerian Air Force assets. It has been training its own pilots for some years, with the first batch graduating in 2017 from the Nigerian Army Aviation School.