Bangladesh Army Aviation Group

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Bangladesh Army Aviation Group
Roundel of Bangladesh - Army Aviation.svg
Bangladesh Army insignia
Active26 March 1978 – present
Country Bangladesh
Branch Bangladesh Army
TypeArmy aviation
Size618 personnel
(70+ pilots)
Headquarters/GarrisonDhaka Cantonment
Nickname(s)Army Aviation Group
AAG
EngagementsChittagong Hill Tracts conflict
DecorationsSee Medals of the Bangladesh Armed Forces
Commanders
Army Air CommanderBGen Abdullah Al Azhar
Aircraft flown
Trainer helicopterBell 206
Utility helicopterEurocopter AS365 Dauphin
TrainerCessna 152
TransportC-295W, Cessna 208 Caravan, Mi-171Sh

The Army Aviation Group is the army aviation unit of the Bangladesh Army. The AAG conducts military air operations and is responsible for doctrine, manning and configuration for all aviation resources in the Army.

History[edit]

Origin[edit]

EADS CASA C-295 of Bangladesh Army Aviation Group

The unit started its journey on 1 January 1978 as Army Aviation Flight. At that time, the army had no pilot training facilities of its own. Civil Aviation Authority, Bangladesh took up the responsibility of pilot training. Initially, the unit had no aircraft. The first aircraft in the army aviation unit were two Bell 205 helicopters gifted by Iran government in 1978. On 7 September 1979, the unit was upgraded to Army Aviation Squadron. On 15 July 1980, the unit got regiment strength and named Army Air Regiment. In 1982, four Cessna 152 were procured for the regiment. These were the first fixed-wing aircraft of the army aviation. In 1983, one Piper PA-31T Cheyenne aircraft was procured which was used for VIP transport purpose. In 27 November 1995, it was finally brought to a group strength and named Army Aviation Group. Three Bell 206 L4 helicopters and one Cessna 208 Caravan were procured later to strengthen the Aviation Group.

Present[edit]

The strength of the unit is more than 204 with 30+ pilots. Members from all the corps of Bangladesh Army can join this unit with proper qualification and training. At present, Army Aviation Group operates two Eurocopter AS365 Dauphin helicopters, one C-295W aircraft and one Cessna 208 Caravan aircraft for transport and utility purpose. Six Mi-171Sh helicopters are used for light attack and combat transport role. Three Bell 206 helicopters and four Cessna 152 aircraft are there for the training of the army aviators.

Army aviation maintenance workshop[edit]

This unit is responsible for the maintenance of the aircraft of the army aviation group. Previously, personnel from Bangladesh Air Force did all the maintenance task of army aviation. Later on, army came up with its own maintenance unit with its own personnel.

Aircraft[edit]

Bangladesh Army's Cessna 208 aircraft
A Bell 206 helicopter

Current Inventory[edit]

Aircraft Origin Type Variant In service Notes
Transport
CASA C-295 Spain transport 1[1]
Cessna 208 United States transport / utility 1[1]
Helicopters
Bell 206 United States utility / trainer 206L 2[1]
Mil Mi-17 Russia utility / transport Mi-17/171 5 1 on order[1]
Eurocopter AS355 France utility 2[1]

Previous aircraft operated by the Army were the Bell 205 helicopter and the Piper PA-31T Cheyenne[2]

Future modernisation plans[edit]

Bangladesh government has adopted a total re-structuring plan for the Army aviation group. As per the plan the Army aviation group will be renamed as the Army aviation. The total manpower of the unit will be raised from 204 to 704 personnel. By 2021, the number of aircraft operated by army aviation will be twenty six. The army aviation maintenance workshop with 147 manpower will be re-structured to army aviation engineering workshop with 490 personnel. An aviation directorate will also be formed for the army.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "World Air Forces 2019". Flightglobal Insight. 2019. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  2. ^ "World Air Forces 1987 pg. 59". flightglobal.com. Retrieved 21 March 2015.
  3. ^ "সেনাবাহিনীর জন্য নতুন এভিয়েশন পরিদপ্তর হচ্ছে" (in Bengali). Daily BD News. 5 December 2017. Retrieved 20 December 2017.