New Delhi: The current scenario of ammunition for armed forces is not sufficient and Central Government has initiated the movement to equip Indian Army with “fully fighting fit” with “optimal” stockpiles within 2 years from now.
According to the sources, the government is planning to equip stockpiles of ammunition, spares and reserves for “short and intense wars” under the Rs 23,700 crore worth of deals inked over the last 10 months. However, present situation stated that Army, Navy and IAF weaker or compromising in either way.
The border of India and Pakistan covers 778-km LoC and same with China that is 4,057-km. Round the clock security, protection and safety measures included not just manpower but the quality and quantity of technology in defence used matters most for any nation. Both the neighbours are not easy-taking as there are many standoffs that took place this year.
Considering latest CAG report submitted in Parliament stated ‘no significant improvement’ for armed forces and there are crippling shortages in ammunition stockpiles or the war wastage reserves (WWR). Moreover, it also raised the concern of the quality of ammunition supplied by the Ordnance Factory Board since March 2013.
Conducting a follow-up audit to its May 2015 report on the dismal state of “ammunition management in the Army”, the audit watchdog maintained the stocks of 121 (80%) of the 152 types of ammunition were under the authorization level required for 40 days of “intensive fighting” as per WWR norms.
“Further, availability of 83 (55%) types of ammunition were below the MARL (minimum acceptable risk level of ammunition stocks for 20 days) and 61 (40%) types were at a critical level (less than 10 days). Availability of high-calibre ammunition for tanks and artillery are in a more alarming state. Moreover, in the absence of fuses, 83% of the high-calibre ammunition currently held by Army is not in a state to be used operationally,” it added.
The 22 Apache attack and 15 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters ordered from the US for Rs 22,000 crore will come between March-July 2019 and March 2020. Similarly, the bulk of the 145 M-777 ultra-light howitzers, which can be swiftly air-lifted to threatened high-altitude areas along the LAC, will arrive from March 2019 to June 2021.