Saturday, November 22, 2014

Who is Modi Fighting With?

Three decades on, defence minister clears Rs 15,750 crore howitzer project

Three decades on, defence minister clears Rs 15,750 crore howitzer project
The defence acquisitions council (DAC), chaired by Manohar Parrikar, gave initial clearance to the Rs 15,750 crore project to acquire 814 mounted artillery gun systems.
NEW DELHI: The government on Saturday sought to revive the Army's moribund artillery modernization project, which has miserably failed to take off ever since the infamous Bofors scandal of the mid-1980s, but deferred decisions on two crucial aircraft projects to next month.

The defence acquisitions council (DAC), chaired for the first time by Manohar Parrikar, gave initial clearance to the Rs 15,750 crore project to acquire 814 mounted artillery gun systems or motorized howitzers to plug critical gaps in the Army's long-range, high-volume firepower.

Officials said the two big-ticket IAF projects, in turn, will now be considered in the next DAC meeting on December 9/10 since Parrikar, just two weeks old as the defence minister, wanted more information and time to better acquaint himself with the complex defence procurement procedures.

READ ALSO: Defence deals stuck due to lobbying, Parrikar says

The DAC had to decide whether to go ahead with the Rs 13,000 crore mega project for the private sector to supply 56 medium transport aircraft to replace IAF's ageing Avro fleet despite only a single bidder, the Tata-Airbus consortium, being in the fray. The second IAF case was the around Rs 7,000 crore acquisition of 106 more Swiss Pilatus PC-7 basic trainer aircraft, with bulk of them produced domestically, to help train rookie pilots, as reported by TOI earlier.

READ ALSO: Don't hang me on day one, Parrikar says

The DAC did approve the revised payment schedule for the nine "nodes" and 10 "subnodes" of the IAF's integrated air command and control system (IACCS) being set up in the country for Rs 7,160 crore. While five nodes are already in place, with integration of air and ground radars, four more will now come up to address the lack of radar coverage over central and peninsular India as well as Andaman and Nicobar archipelago.

The only real take-away from the over two hour-long DAC meeting was the renewal of one of the several artillery projects, which have witnessed repeated scrapping of tenders — even after extensive trials of the guns on offer — due to recurring scandals.

The Bofors 155mm howitzers played an important role in India's victory in the 1999 Kargil War.

A fresh tender or RFP (request for proposal) will now be issued for the 155mm/52-calibre mounted artillery in the "Buy & Make India" category, with 100 guns to be bought off-the-shelf and the rest 714 to be subsequently manufactured in India. If the guns had been bought a decade ago, as was envisaged, they would have cost half of the Rs 15,750 crore figure.

"Private companies like L&T, Tata, Bharat Forge, Punj Lloyd, Ashok Leyland, Mahindra Defence and the like can respond to the RFP after tying up with a foreign collaborator. The 814 guns, with a 40-km range, will equip 40 medium artillery regiments of the Army," said an official.

The Army's overall artillery modernization plan, now worth upwards of Rs 50,000 crore, has remained derailed since the Swedish Bofors scandal led to Rajiv Gandhi government's downfall. Other corruption scandals around global artillery manufacturers like South African Denel, Israeli Soltam and Singapore Technology Kinetic's over the last decade did not allow the modernisation plan to kick off. In sharp contrast, both China and Pakistan are fast inducting 155mm/52-calibre artillery guns. 
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Sid Harth
Two citations of African countries were to support of my argument. Constant conflicts with their neighbors, a very typical African colonial world, did not benefit from arming themselves. Why do you think, Modi's quest to make India the most powerful country in the South-Asia? How many battles Modi-brigade is going to fight, simultaneously and for how long? Bunch of idiots. ...and I am Sid Harth
Sid Harth
The modern Sudanese Armed Forces is equipped mainly with Soviet, Russian, Chinese, Ukrainian, and Sudanese manufactured weaponry. Significant data has been made available by the UN Experts' Groups on the Sudan on arms supplies to Sudanese forces. The standard issue assault rifle is now an H&K G3 variant that is domestically manufactured. The IISS reported in 2007 that the SAF had 200 T-54/55 main battle tanks and 70 Type 62 light tanks. [18] By 2011 the total that the IISS listed was 360: 20 M-60, 60 Type 59, 270 T-54/55, and 10 'Al Bashier' (Type-85-IIM).[23] The 'Al-Bashier' is a licensed version of the Type 85M-II tank.[24] In addition, the 'Digna'a modernisation programme for the T-55 has been reported.[25] Chinese Type 96 tanks have also been known to serve in the Sudanese Army. These are by far and away Sudan's most modern and powerful tanks.[26][27][28] The IISS reported 218 armoured cars (6 Panhard AML-90, 60 BRDM-2, 80 Ferret, and 30 Alvis Saladin) in 2007, alongside 15 BMP-2.[29] Also reported were 42 M-113, 19 LAV-150/V-100 Commando, BTR-152/BTR-50, 20 OT-62/OT-64. 104 Egyptian Walid were ordered in 1981-1986.[29] The IISS estimated in 2011 that Sudan had 778+ artillery pieces, including 20 M-101, 16 D-30, D-74, M-30, and 75 130mm M-46/Type-59-I.[23] The IISS estimated in 2011 that the Army had 20 pieces of self-propelled artillery, including 10 2S1 Gvozdika and 10 (AMX) Mk F3.[23] Multiple rocket launchers include 122mm BM-21 Grad and Type-81. Also reported were M43 mortars (120mm). Anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons reported included a number of Swingfire. 54 9K32 Strela-2 (SA-7 Grail) were reported, and many anti-aircraft guns. According to a UN official document, Sudan also allegedly has 10 T-72s provided by Ukraine.[30]
Sid Harth
Algeria's primary military supplier has been the former Soviet Union, which has sold various types of sophisticated equipment under military trade agreements, and the People's Republic of China.[citation needed] Since independence in the 1960s, no foreign bases are known to have been allowed in Algeria, although in the 1970s and 1980s, particularly, large numbers of Soviet military advisers were stationed in the country. Since 2001, security cooperation with the United States has increased, and US forces have taken part in training missions in the country's Saharan south. In 2006, multi-billion dollar purchases of Russian military equipment were made in order to upgrade the country's conventional arsenal. This included a deal by the Algerian Air Force to buy 28 Su-30MKA and 36 MiG-29SMT for up to $3.5 billion. However, those MiG-29s were returned to Russia in February 2008 because of poor quality of their airframe, after technical evaluations in Algeria.[11][12] In May 2008 the two governments agreed a new deal to replace those 36 MiG-29SMT by a new batch of 16 Su-30MKA which meet all requirements of Algerian Air Force, but the issue does not appear to be completely resolved in 2009. As of October 2009 it was reported that Algeria cancels weapons deal over Israeli parts.[13] Algeria also has a small domestic military industry of its own. The Army produces assault rifles AK-47 ( 7.62mm ) and AK-74 ( 5.45mm ) licensed by Russia and China as well as rocket-type RPG in the Construction Company Mechanical Khenchela. The logistics base station produces various types of AICV ( Armoured Infantry Fighting Vehicle ) for the recognition and transport of troops and light armored vehicles for the maintenance of order. The air force produces two types of light aircraft for the basic training and produces its own drone reconnaissance since December 2010. The Russian company Rosoboronexport, has expressed a request for financial assistance to several countries including Algeria, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the UAE to participate in the project for the production of the T-50 (PAK-FA) 5th generation fighter aircraft.
Sid Harth
By the time, all systems are properly inducted in various armed services branches, They shall become outdated by ten years. If the object is to defend the Pakistan, China, Bangladesh borders, it would be a waste of money and time. Considering Russian and Chinese interest in supplying Pakistan with almost anything Pakistan desires, better make peace with Pakistan and cede West Bengal to Bangladesh. That solves Modi's Mamata problem. Defense of a country, the size of India, is a myth. Modern gadgetry-electronic hardware and software, both, keep improving/modifying. A large and highly technical arms cache does not frighten China. China wants peace with their immediate neighbors more than little territorial disputes. Modi is not the man to invoke Mahatma Gandhi's 'Ahimsa,' and Jawaharlal Nehru's 'Panchsheel.' Modi wants to scratch Pakistan's and China's faces. An exercise in futility. Oops,Obama has a different plan for a peaceful coexistence. He stays in Afghanistan, whether Pakistan likes it or not. ...and I am Sid Harth
Sid Harth
The 75 mm Howitzer Motor Carriage M8 was a self-propelled howitzer vehicle of the United States developed during the Second World War. It was developed on the chassis of the then-new Light Tank M5 (Stuart VI). The prototype was designated the T17E1 HMC[1]. It had the standard M5 turret removed and replaced with an open-topped turret and the drivers' hatches moved from the hull roof to the glacis plate. Armament consisted of a new open-topped turret armed with a 75 mm M2 howitzer, later a 75 mm M3 howitzer, which were reworks of the M1A1 pack howitzer. It carried 46 rounds of 75 mm ammunition; types of ammunition carried were Smoke M89 and H.E. (high explosive) M48. Unlike the standard M5 Light tank, the M8 featured no hull-mounted or coaxial Browning M1919A4 .30cal machine guns. A Browning M2HB .50cal machine gun with 400 rounds was mounted on the right rear corner of the turret for local defense and anti-aircraft purposes. The T17E1 HMC was ordered into production as the 75 mm Howitzer Motor Carriage M8 in April 1942. Production ran from September 1942 to January 1944. A total of 1,778 vehicles were produced by Cadillac Motor Car Co. The M8 was used in the Italian Campaign, the Western Front, and in the Pacific Theater of Operations by the US Army and on the Western Front by the French Army. It was also used by the French Union and State of Vietnam during the First Indochina War. It stayed in French service until the 1960s and saw service in Algeria.

Source: TOI

...and I am Sid Harth

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