Indian Navy receives first P-8I reconnaissance aircraft

New Delhi: The Indian Navy Wednesday received the first of eight Boeing P-8I long range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare (LRMRASW) aircraft at the INS Rajali naval air Station in Tamil Nadu, giving a major fillip to its capabilities.

Vice Admiral Bimal Kumar Verma, chief of staff of the Eastern Naval Command received the aircraft in a function at INS Rajali.

Seven more P-8Is will be delivered over the next two years. The aircraft, based on the Boeing 737-800(NG) airframe, is the Indian variant of the P-8A Poseidon that Boeing has developed for the US Navy. India has the option of procuring four additional aircraft.

The aircraft is equipped with foreign and indigenous sensors for maritime reconnaissance, anti-submarine operations and electronic intelligence missions. The release said the aircraft is fully integrated with state-of-the-art sensors and highly potent anti-surface and anti-submarine weapons, a defence ministry statement said.

The aircraft have been procured under a contract signed in 2009.

The P-8I aircraft would greatly enhance India’s maritime surveillance capabilities in the Indian Ocean Region, the statement said.


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