The Taliban has gained control of the Mi-24 attack helicopter which was India’s donation to Afghanistan. The emerging development comes at a time when the militant organization are wreaking havoc in the landlocked country. According to reports 7 to 8 capitals of Afghanistan are already in control of the Taliban.


One of 4 Mi-24 attack helicopters has been already seized by the Taliban militants amid the ongoing conflict between the militants of the rebellious organization and the Afghan forces.

On August 12, the internet was littered with images and video footages of Taliban militants gathered around the well-kept attack helicopter which Afghanistan got in 2017 as a donation.

Also Read: India Urges Citizens in Afghanistan’s Mazar-e-Sharif to Depart, Special Flight Set in Place by IAF

When Did India Give the Mi-24 to Afghanistan?

Earlier in 2019, the India’s Ambassador to Afghanistan, Mr. Vinay Kumar handed over the remaining two Mi-24 attack helicopters to the Afghanistan Minister of National Defence, Mr. Asadullah Khalid. The handing over took place on October 2019.

A press release by Afghanistan read-

“The helicopters are a replacement for the four attack helicopters previously gifted by India to Afghanistan in 2015. The combat performance and offensive firepower that the Mi-24V helicopters provide will increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the Afghan Air Force in ensuring that the ANDSF maintain an agile and robust Counter Terrorism capability.”

According to reports, the Mi-24s were purchased from Belarus and were large attack helicopters equipped for assault and transport mission. The helicopters can ferry up to 8 people and were gifted to Afghanistan at a crucial time when it was looking for alternative weapons to strengthen its defence forces in the event of the US troop pullout.

Also Read: Another Maoist Attack: Chhattisgarh’s Ghotiya Rocked by IED Blast, 12 Civilians Injured, 1 Killed

Video Footage, Satellite Images Confirm New Taliban Gain

On August 11, a video footage of the helicopter’s eventual control by Taliban was released by Joseph Dempsey on Twitter. Dempsey is a research associate for the defence and military analysis at the International Institute of Strategic Studies, UK. In the tweet he wrote, “Video reportingly shows #Taliban captured Kunduz airport with #Afghanistan Air Force Mi-35 Hind attack helicopter.”

Further, Dempsey backed his claim by sharing satellite images of the place where the video was taken and claimed that it was from the Kunduz airport.

Also Read: Kinnaur Landslide: 2 Dead, 25-30 Still Feared Buried Under Debris, Army Deployed

Helicopters Won’t Be of Use to Taliban: Reports

It should be noted that geopolitical pundits are claiming that the choppers won’t be of much of use for Taliban as it requires trained professional pilots to fly it. A report by The Print cited sources which claimed that the helicopter was not in the flying condition as its engines were not overhauled.

However, the move can be considered Taliban’s one of several captures which are displayed on social media to portray the increasing dominance of the Islamic militant organization.

Afghanistan Can Lose Kabul in 90 Days

Meanwhile, reports of Afghanistan losing its capital in 90 days are alarming to say the least. According to a Reuters report, a US defence official cited a US intelligence report said that the Taliban militants can isolate Kabul in 30 days and possibly take it over within the next 90 days.

The official further added, “But this is not a foregone conclusion,” and added that the Afghani forces can in fact reverse the increasing momentum picked up by Taliban by asserting more resistance. So far, Taliban has in its control a 65% of Afghanistan and are threatening to take another 11 capitals of the country.

Also Read: Mission Failed – How ISRO’s GSLV-F10 Failed Despite the Successful Take Off?

“Don’t regret withdrawing of troops” US President Biden

The rapid gains made by Taliban became all the more pronounced after US President Joe Biden ordered a complete pull out of the NATO troops from Afghanistan after almost 2 decades. However, President Biden claimed that he did not regret his decision to pull out the troops, and asked Afghan leaders to continue fighting for their homeland.