CONTRACT FOR ARMY’S NEW MBRL CARRIERS SOON
A 100-crore contract for the Army’s new BM21 multi-barrel rocket launcher vehicles is likely to be awarded shortly to the Ashok Leyland-L&T consortium that was declared lowest bidder in the competition earlier this year. Sources say the company is likely to be contracted for the supply of about 100 units, covering virtually the entire BM21 Grad rocket arsenal. The Indian Army has bolstered its rocket regiments with the Russian Smerch system and indigenous Pinaka, both of which have proved to be excellent performers. However, with the Soviet-vintage Grad systems still in functional form, a decision was taken in 2009 to spruce up their carriers to extend the lives of the BM21 rocket regiments. The Ashok Leyland-L&T consortium is poised to bid for other vehicle requirements of the Army too, as is Tata Motors, to fill the void left by the Tatra controversy. As SP’s has reported before, the Indian Army is in the market for the entire spectrum of specialised vehicles from light infantry vehicles to heavy specialty vehicles across the spectrum of missions and capabilities.