INDIAN DEFENCE ACQUISITION COUNCIL AUTHORISES PURCHASE OF ARTILLERY GUNS
The Indian Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved a 15,750-crore project to purchase artillery guns for the national army. A total of 814, 155mm/52calibre mounted artillery guns will be acquired under the ‘Buy and Make’ category, as reported by Press Trust of India. The first 100 guns will be bought off the shelf from the original equipment manufacturer, while the remaining 714 will be manufactured in India. Unnamed sources said the Indian Defence Ministry would issue a fresh request for proposal (RFP) for the procurement that will be open to public and private companies.
Tata Power SED with its 155mm truck mounted gun system and L&T-Ashok Leyland-Nexter with their 155mm gun are among the private companies in India that are likely to submit proposals for the project, reported India Today magazine. The Indian Army failed to acquire a single howitzer since the infamous Bofors scandal in the late 1980s, and the procurement plans frequently suffered setbacks in the wake of corruption allegations and single vendor scenario in the last few years.
Bids are already invited from companies for 155mm/52-calibre towed guns. The army plans to replace its 2,000 existing 105mm light field guns with a mix of towed, mounted and wheeled artillery under a 35,000-crore project, according to India Today.