Ministry of Defence, on March 10, 2023, signed a contract for procurement of six Dornier-228 aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF) from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) at a cost of 667 crore. The aircraft was used by IAF for Route Transport Role and communication duties. Subsequently, it has also been used for training of transport pilots of the IAF. The present lot of six aircraft will be procured with an upgraded fuel-efficient engine coupled with a five bladed composite propeller.
The aircraft is ideally suited for short haul operations from semi-prepared/short runways of the North East and island chains of India. The addition of the six aircraft will further bolster the operational capability of the IAF in the remote areas.