Today The Hindu Highlights 9 April 2022
Congress internal poll process gets a renewed push
Digital membership drive in progress
The process to complete the organisational polls of the Congress party to elect a new party chief by Septem ber this year has received a fresh push. Sources said, at a meeting on Wednesday, it was decided that the Central Election Authority, headed by Madhusudan Mistry, would be using the electoral list that is being prepared through the digital member ship drive.
The drive is being over seen by the Data Analytics team headed by Praveen Chakravarty. And amidst the turmoil over its repeated electoral debacles and ques tions about leadership, the Congress has enrolled about 2.15 crore digital members until Friday.
Based on this member ship drive that is on until April 15, the electoral col lege list is being prepared to
The Congress has enrolled 2.15 crore members through a digital drive. * PTI
complete the party’s inter nal polls, from block to State level, by the end of May.
Sources said, at a meeting on Wednesday, it was decid ed that the Central Election Authority would be using the data thrown up by the Data Analytics team. In all, about 3.2 crore members, spread across 11 lakh polling booths in the country, are expected to be a part of the organisational process.
Navy crew completes training on MH60R helicopters
The ﬁrst batch of three choppers is expected to arrive in India by June, says a defence oﬃcal
The ﬁrst batch of Indian Na vy aircrew successfully com pleted its training on the MH60R MultiRole Helicop ters (MRH) at the U.S. Naval Air Station, North Island in San Diego last week.
“The 10month course in cluded conversion training and other advanced qualiﬁtions on MH60R helicop ter. The crew ﬂw extensive ly from Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 41 (HSM 41) and achieved day and night deck landing qualiﬁca tion onboard a U.S. Navy Destroyer,” the Navy said in a statement.
The crew would be res ponsible for inducting the versatile ‘Romeo’ into the In dian Navy, it stated.
The ﬁrst batch of three helicopters are expected to arrive in India by June, a defence oﬃcial said.
This will be the ﬁrst major
induction of helicopters by the Navy in decades for de ployment on ships.
The MH60R helicopters will provide the Navy en hanced oﬀensive role includ
ing antisubmarine warfare, antiship strike, specialised maritime operations as well as search and rescue opera tions, the Navy added.
Three helicopters were handed over to the Indian Navy last July in the U.S. and are being used for training Indian pilots at Pensacola, Florida and San Diego.
$2.2 billion deal
India had signed a $2.2 bil lion deal for MH60R heli copters built by Lockheed Martin during the visit of then U.S. President Donald Trump in February 2020. Deliveries are expected to be completed by 2025.
The Navy is facing an acute shortage of helicop ters on its frontline warships but procurement of new ones has been repeatedly delayed.
The MH60Rs are a re placement of the Sea King 42/42A helicopters already decommissioned in the 1990s, and are envisaged to operate from the frontline ships and aircraft carriers providing them the critical attributes of ﬂexibility of op
eration, enhanced surveil lance and attacking capability.
The third positive indige nisation list of 101 equip ment and platforms released by the Defence Ministry on Thursday includes the long pending deal for Naval Utili ty Helicopters (NUH) which was earlier being processed through the Strategic Part nership route of procure ment procedure.
The Navy is now in talks with the Hindustan Aero nautics Limited (HAL) to ac quire a variant of its Ad vanced Light Helicopter (ALH).
Another major require ment for 123 multirole heli copters is also pending. To address the shortfall in the interim, last April, the Navy issued a Request for Infor mation (RFI) for lease of 24 light helicopters.
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