RfP for the Avros later this month

NAK Browne

However, two aircraft manufacturers Airbus Military with its C295 and Alenia Aermacchi with the C-27J are expected to be the front-runners for the contract.

Whichever foreign company wins, it will likely work with a private Indian company. The partnership element of the deal would help create India's first airframe manufacturer.

The Hawker Siddeley 748M Avro aircraft was built by the company's subsidiary Avro and first flew in 1960. It was designed as an airliner but adopted for military transport with a view to replace aircraft operators' aging DC-3 Dakotas.

India uses its Avros for communication, troop movements and training missions.

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