In a major development towards self-sufficiency in ammunition, the Army has asked Indian firms to supply locally made ammunition and has done away with import-dependency.
A request for proposal (RFP) has been issued to selected India private firms to supply ammunition over the next decade and with assured annual supplies running into thousands of pieces each, and in some cases lakhs of pieces. This will be worth crores of rupees. Sources said various types of ammunition, being imported, will now be procured on the “Make in India” model.
This will include 125 MM armour piercing types (used to stop tanks and armoured vehicles); 122 MM grad rockets for Pinaka series; 40 MM grenades capable of being machine launched, 30 MM ammunition used by armoured infantry carrying vehicles; electronic fuses and bi-modular charge system.
The Army had issued a request for information in November last year and some 25 Indian companies applied.
The selected Indian companies can form a consortium, can have foreign partner as a 49 per cent stakeholder and even export the same to other friendly countries using same equipment. Till now, all this equipment was imported. The quantum of the order can be gauged from a small fact that the Army annually needs 6 lakh electronic fuses and five variants.
In May 2015, the CAG had said the ammunition roadmap drawn by the Army in 2012 for building up stocks to 100 per cent by 2019 had remained far from realisation. It blamed the shortage on the inability of the Ordnance Factories Board to meet the demand of the Army as well as the delays in imports.
By: Tribune India
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