India Army Assures Orders For DRDO Howitzers

The Indi­an Army has assured the DRDO an order for over 140 how­itzers canons, but only after the research agency proves it’s artillery guns on the field. DRDO’s Pune based research and devel­op­ment cen­tre is devel­op­ing a 155mm 52 cal­i­bre indige­nous how­itzer gun for the Army.

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The DRDO was recent­ly told by the Indi­an Army that it will place an order of over 140 how­itzer guns if the guns being devel­oped by DRDO are proven in field tri­als which will be con­duct­ed by the Indi­an Army.

The pro­pos­al made by the Indi­an Army was also a part of the pre­sen­ta­tion made to Defence Min­is­ter Mr. A. K. Antony while he was review­ing the pre­pared­ness of the Army’s Corp of Artillery. The Indi­an army has not induct­ed a sin­gle artillery gun for over 25 years after the Bofors scan­dal which broke out in the 1980’s.

The defence min­is­ter was giv­en a brief about the progress made by DRDO in fur­ther devel­op­ment of the gun which is being pro­duced by the Ord­nance Fac­to­ry Board (OFB).

The tri­al of the artillery gun was recent­ly done at the Pokhran fir­ing ranges in the pres­ence of senior army offi­cials. The army has already placed an order for 100 of these long range guns.

Apart from induct­ing the Bofors guns, the Indi­an Army has also approved the pro­cure­ment of 145 Ultra Light How­itzers from the Unit­ed States under a For­eign Mil­i­tary Sales route. The Amer­i­can artillery guns will be deployed in high alti­tude areas bor­der­ing Chi­na. The Ultra Light How­itzers will be the first guns to be induct­ed by the Indi­an Army in over two decades.

A deal for these guns is expect­ed to be signed by the end of this fis­cal.

DRDO had ear­li­er devel­oped the 105 mm field artillery guns for the Army and is still in oper­a­tional ser­vice.

The DRDO has also start­ed work­ing on the devel­op­ment of the ‘Bhim’ self-pro­pelled how­itzers about a decade back but the project was vir­tu­al­ly scrapped after the South African firm Denel was black­list­ed by the Min­istry of Defence.

Source:
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