The Indian Air Force has acquired Israeli-manufactured Spike Non-Line of Sight (NLOS) anti-tank guided missiles. These air-to-ground Spike Non-Line of Sight (NLOS) missiles possess an impressive range of up to 30 kilometers, rendering them a valuable asset for conducting precision strikes from a considerable distance. This acquisition coincides with a period of heightened geopolitical tensions, particularly due to the manoeuvres of the Chinese Army in the vicinity of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) within the Eastern Ladakh sector reports airrecognition.

This development has emerged in the midst of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, a situation that has underscored the critical role played by anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles in contemporary warfare. The Indian Air Force's proactive interest in acquiring the Spike NLOS missiles was initially spurred by the Chinese Army's deployment of tanks and combat vehicles in close proximity to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) approximately two years ago. In response to this challenge, the Indian Air Force initiated the procurement of NLOS missiles, initially in limited quantities, while simultaneously exploring avenues for domestic production through the "Make-in-India" initiatives. This approach is seen as an interim measure until the Defence Research and Development Organisation can develop an indigenous anti-tank missile over the next three years.

These anti-tank missiles possess the capability to effectively engage and incapacitate enemy tank regiments, thereby enhancing India's overall deterrence capability. The Indian Air Force is actively considering their integration into the fleet of Russian-origin Mi-17-V5 helicopters, a move that would further amplify the versatility of these aircraft. By enabling ground targets to be engaged from extended distances, the Spike NLOS missiles have the potential to impede the advance of opposing forces.

India possesses a diverse range of air-to-surface missiles sourced from various origins, contributing to its ground strike capabilities. Notable among these missiles is the versatile ASM AGM-114L/R Hellfire, originating from the United States, known for its adaptability and precision. The Russian Kh-29, recognized for its potent strike capabilities, as well as the Kh-59 and its advanced variant, Kh-59M, enhance India's tactical flexibility. India also employs the AS-30 and the Popeye II (Crystal Maze) in its air-to-surface capabilities.

The Mi-17V-5 is a versatile multi-role helicopter that was introduced into service with the Indian Air Force in February 2012. It is equipped with twin turboshaft engines, facilitating dependable performance and a maximum payload capacity of up to 4,000 kg. Capable of accommodating a crew of two and passengers, the multi-role Mi-17V-5 helicopter can adapt to various roles, including transportation, search and rescue, as well as troop deployment. This model of helicopter has played a pivotal role in the modernization of India's aerial capabilities. According to the Military Balance 2022 report, the Indian Army possesses a total of 148 Mi-17V helicopters.

At the end of 2022, significant tests were conducted by various armed forces, including those of Israel, to assess the feasibility of integrating Spike NLOS missiles onto helicopters. These trials aimed to transform these originally ground-to-ground missiles into air-surface missiles by adapting them for deployment from helicopters. The results of these tests helped validate the capability of these missiles to be effectively used from aerial platforms, thereby expanding their operational range and versatility. Rafael, the renowned defence company, was also a key player in advancing these efforts.