Indian Army Artillery

Rage

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Following a flurry of articles that appeared in various Indian media on Aug. 25 2009 about Indian artillery acquisitions remaining in limbo even while Pak procured, over the course of the last four-and-a-half years, 67 M-109 A5 155 mm howitzers from America using 'War on Terror' funds, the following news announcement from Indian Defence Online is a revision to and an update of the procurement status, with a reissued, heightened tender for the induction of 2814 artillery of different types. While it is true there has been not a single artillery procurement since the Bofors scandal, India still has in its posession, the following:

This is from a now dated article from late 1998, however in light of the fact that no artillery procurements have subsequently followed, it still stands.



The Field Artillery has in its service:


- One regiment each of 7.2 in and 5.5 in guns for general support;
both weapons were expected to be taken out of service by 1998.


- The Bofors 155 mm FH-77B howitzer used for general support and
counter-bombardment. This weapon is also deployed in the mountains
with six howitzers in Siachen and an 18-weapon regiment in both
Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. A total of 410 FH-77s against a
projected requirement of over 2,000 were procured in 1986. The
programme came into disrepute because of alleged bribes to
politicians (the Bofors scandal refered to aforthwith).


- The towed 130 mm M-46 field gun and the 130 mm Catapult
self-propelled gun (which equips only one regiment) used for
close support, general support and counter battery fire.
India procured about 400 Russian M-46s between 1992-95 for around
Rs.100,000 ($2,800) apiece. The Field Artillery now has 720 M-46s in
36 regiments and plans to have 60 regiments equipped by 2000.


- The 122 mm D-30 towed howitzer used for close support by multiple
regiments deployed on the plains.


- Many regiments now equipped with the 105 mm Indian Field Gun, and
earmarked to convert to the M-46.


- The 105 mm Light Field Gun equips regiments deployed in the
mountains. - The last regiment of 105 mm Abbot self-propelled guns
will soon be phased out.


- The 75 mm Pack Gun-Howitzer used to provide close support in
mountainous regions. While the splinter effect of its shells is
greater than the 25 pounder gun, its effect on defensive positions remains
unsatisfactory.


- The 160 mm M58 Tampella. The Field Artillery is also equipped with the
120 mm AM-50 Brand smoothbore which can be used to a range of 9,000 m
with PEPA/LP extended range ammunition.​


----

And now for the good news:


Indian Army to Execute $4 Billion Artillery Projects

August 27, 2009
http://indiadefenceonline.com/1125/indian-army-to-execute-4-billion-artillery-projects/



India is all set to initiate the long-awaited $4 billion artillery modernisation programme and will shortly float a global tender for the acquisition of 814 motorised howitzers.

The Artillery modernisation programme aims to induct roughly 2,814 guns of different types.


Defence Ministry sources said that the project has been granted approval by the Defence Acquisitions Council which is chaired by Defence Minister A K Antony and the Request for Proposal will be issued.

The artillery modernization includes off-the-shelf purchase of 200 155mm/52-calibre mounted gun systems from overseas, which will be followed by indigenous manufacture of another 614 such howitzers under transfer of technology.

The 17-tonne motorized howitzers will arm 40 regiments.

Another major project includes the purchase of 100 155mm/52-calibre self-propelled tracked guns for five artillery regiments and its field trials are slated for May-June 2010.

India is also looking to finalize the Rs 8,000 crore project to buy 400 155mm/52-calibre towed artillery guns, which is to be followed by indigenous manufacture of another 1,180 howitzers.

The contenders are BAE Systems, ST Kinetics of Singapore and Israeli Soltam.


Another project was to acquire 140 air-mobile ultra-light howitzers (ULHs) for Rs 2,900 crore. This is being eagerly awaited since the Indian Army needs ULHs to ensure artillery can be deployed in remote inaccessible areas.


India’s artillery modernization has been plagued with scandals and delays for decades.

No new artillery gun has been inducted ever since the infamous Rs 1,437 crore Bofors contract for 410 field howitzers became a scandal in 1986.

After that, a series of other delays including more dubious defence scams have kept India from modernizaing its artillery.

Lately, ST Kinetics has also come under the scanner for corruption charges.


Indian Army to Execute $4 Billion Artillery Projects | India Defence Online
 

skg

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dear all,

i am new member , and i want to know about india own Artillery devlopment project , is drdo thinking about that .
 

Mohan

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dear all,

i am new member , and i want to know about india own Artillery devlopment project , is drdo thinking about that .
Please introduce yourself at member introductions thread:)
 

MIG_ACE

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Hmmm... the article mentions "Floating a Tender" IIRC, the trials of atleast one type of artillery guns (think it was the towed howitzers) were completed and the Bofors gun was found to be the best. I remember reading an article on Shiv Aroor's blog. The govt. backed down because they were scared of giving another contract to Bofors after last time's scandal.
So if we are floating another tender, what about the previous trials. And what about the fact that the MoD went on a blacklisting spree and blacklisted everyone in sight including Denel, Soltam and that Singaporean firm?
 

sob

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This is one of the most neglected arms of the IA IMO.

Even after demonstrating it's usefulness in the Kargil operations we are still nowhere in procuring the Howitzers to equip our army. Out of the 410 purchased from Bofors in the 80s IIRC only about 60% are in use due to the paucity of spares. IA has been forced to cannabalise many of it's artillery pieces to service the remaining.

This is a very sad state of affairs. I was reading in today's paper that even BAE has withdrawn from the tender. Could other members with more infor on this issue update us.
 

SATISH

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Pegasus is offering the Light howitzer...but we need self propelled ones...I think Ceaser is a front runner in it.
 

SATISH

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I always stand beside the Bofors...the latest one's specs look awesome.
 

Atul

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I would personally support the "Caesar truck-mounted howitzer".

The Caeser is forward-facing 155mm/52 calibre gun is mounted on a 4x4 or 6x6 truck chassis depending on the terrain it has to be deployed in and can maintain a firing rate of six to eight rounds a minute in sustained fire.

Caesar has an unrefuelled travel range of 600km and maximum speed of 100km/h.

Its low weight of around 18 tonnes reduces both complexity and cost. Its strategic, operational and tactical mobility is superior to that of both the self-propelled guns and towed guns. It matches the reactivity of the self-propelled guns and the light weight of the towed variety.

When compared with a towed gun and its hauler, the Caesar is shorter and requires less space, is far more mobile and maneuverable, both cross country and on the road, and requires fewer gun crew members (5 to be exact).

When on the move, gun crew survival is ensured by an armoured cab, and the time spent stationary at the firing position is very short.

Transfer of technology is mandated under India's Defence Procurement Procedure enunciated in 2006 & i dont think France will have a problem with this.




 

natarajan

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bofor helped us in kargil to great extent like bvr missiles for airforce so so we should get atleast 1000 bofors and we should forgot about scandal atleast for the nations benefit
 

Atul

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bofor helped us in kargil to great extent like bvr missiles for airforce so so we should get atleast 1000 bofors and we should forgot about scandal atleast for the nations benefit
Dear Natarajan,

the Bofors was a choice made in the 80's Decade (era to be specific) today we need more advanced & smart weapons. the gun we must look out for is truck-mounted artillery system, which is highly mobile (a better option then tower guns), a tested system (Caesar is operational with the Thai Army, the Saudi Arabian National Guard & the French Army), with a decent firing rate, and use a wide range of ammunition.
 

SATISH

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Dear Natarajan,

the Bofors was a choice made in the 80's Decade (era to be specific) today we need more advanced & smart weapons. the gun we must look out for is truck-mounted artillery system, which is highly mobile (a better option then tower guns), a tested system (Caesar is operational with the Thai Army, the Saudi Arabian National Guard & the French Army), with a decent firing rate, and use a wide range of ammunition.
Bofors Defence and Giat Industries 155 mm/52 calibre SPA artillery system (International) - Jane's Armour and Artillery

This is the latest bofors that we are talking about...that is the old model...Giat and Bofors are in fray together.
 

BOSS-Is-Back

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The ia should be looking for truck mobile units like the pinakas, though costly are effective and has a wider range. In modern warfare, artilerry systems wont play a major role, only if the war is subjected to a lower and much controlled scale.
The use of artillery, is to bombard the enemy posts b4 foot soldiers enter, or to stop/slow advances of incmng enemy regiments. This can be done more efficiently by pinaka type systems , (even cheaper and low range ones's are effective)., and not to forget our iaf with a2g missiles having range over 300kms.
Its just my views though...................
 

bhramos

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maybe our babu's are afraid about the name of bofors, actually last time when the same tender was done bofors won in all requirement IA asked for,
but these netas thought it to be given to IAI Soltrum or Israel , but this failed to achieve wat IA wanted , so they scraped the tender and called for new tender.
maybe atleast now IAI's wins and sign deal soon.
 

MIG_ACE

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The ia should be looking for truck mobile units like the pinakas, though costly are effective and has a wider range. In modern warfare, artilerry systems wont play a major role :eek: , only if the war is subjected to a lower and much controlled scale.
What in the world gave you that idea?? MBRLs have their uses, but they cannot totally replace artillery guns. Every "modern" army in the world including the US army uses artillery.
 

jackprince

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The ia should be looking for truck mobile units like the pinakas, though costly are effective and has a wider range. In modern warfare, artilerry systems wont play a major role, only if the war is subjected to a lower and much controlled scale.
The use of artillery, is to bombard the enemy posts b4 foot soldiers enter, or to stop/slow advances of incmng enemy regiments. This can be done more efficiently by pinaka type systems , (even cheaper and low range ones's are effective)., and not to forget our iaf with a2g missiles having range over 300kms.
Its just my views though...................
Have you considered the cost factor of a rocket or a missile vis a vis a artillery shell? Also how many reloads a Pinaka regiment carry before it runs dry? Or operational cost of a multirole a/c?

An artillery regiment can stay at a place unlike an A2G a/c and continue bombarding on enemy with sustained fire for far longer time than MBRLs.

MBRLs play very vital role and sometimes those are of artillery too. But artillery is most cost-effective and reasonable choice for enemy fire suppression within range.

When artillery shells rain down on enemy position for hours continuously, before infantry rushes in it already has given a heavy blow to enemy morale and reinforced defences, which only a good artillery system can deliver.

BTW, do you know John?
 

ajay_ijn

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if babus fear so much that CBI will come running after them, why don't they ask DRDO to start development of new artillery or atleast jointly develop it.

Koreans, Singapore, Israel, european countries. everyone have come up with their own artillery, and India neither is importing nor is developing for more than 20 years.

if Govt planning to import Artillery forever, such a decisive piece of weapon on battlefield but still call themselves a potential military power in Asia?

right now even Pakistan would be a in better position when it comes to artillery.
 

Yusuf

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Can't we build on the Bhim to develop into a good arty system? Many components will be similar. We know how to make guns as proved in Arjun. Wonder why we have not moved in thst direction.
 

jackprince

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Can't we build on the Bhim to develop into a good arty system? Many components will be similar. We know how to make guns as proved in Arjun. Wonder why we have not moved in thst direction.
AFAIK Bhim project was indefinitely postponed when Soltam investigation started. Soltam was supposed to collaborate with DRDO to build Bhim.
 

ant80

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Bofors buried as govt drops case against Quattrocchi
Date: September 30, 2009
NEW DELHI: The Bofors case that led to Congress's defeat in the 1989 Lok Sabha polls has been given an official burial, with the government formally declaring its intention to drop proceedings against the key accused, Ottavio Quattrocchi.

The decision to lay off Quattrocchi, an Italian businessman accused of taking bribes from a Swedish gun manufacturer to facilitate the sale of the Bofors howitzers to India in 1986, was announced in the Supreme Court on Tuesday.

"The Red Corner Notice against Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrocchi was withdrawn a year ago. There is not a rubble of evidence in the case to keep it prolonging in the trial court. We have decided to withdraw all prosecution and close the case," solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam informed SC.

"The CBI pursued the case because of the pendency of the Red Corner Notice, which was withdrawn on November 25, 2008. We will pursue the case if any new evidence comes to light. But for the present, there is not even a vestige of evidence because of which we faced a reversal in getting Quattrocchi extradited, first from Malaysia and then from Argentina," he told a Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices P Sathasivam and B S Chauhan.

The decision to give a burial to the Bofors case, in which the FIR was filed during the V P Singh regime in 1991 and the chargesheet during NDA government's reign in 1999, was taken by the UPA government three days ago, during the Puja vacation, on the basis of a fresh opinion given by attorney general G E Vahanvati.

As a logical corollary to the announcement, the public prosecutor in the case will move an application for closure before the trial court, which is scheduled to hear the case on October 3. Though trial courts have the power to decline prosecution's requests, they don't exercise it very often.

Subramaniam's bold tone contrasted sharply with the furtive moves Congress regimes allegedly made to help the accused in a case that remained a bone of contention between the party and its opponents for close to two decades.

Still, few would have been surprised by it. A closure of the case had looked imminent since UPA-I allowed Quattrocchi to take out his money -- allegedly his share of the Bofors kickbacks -- from accounts with a bank in London. It followed that up by not pressing hard for his extradition from Argentina and by, subsequently, telling Interpol that he was no longer wanted in India.

Interestingly, Subramaniam cited Interpol's decision to take him off its own "wanted" list to back up the Centre's argument to wind up the sputtering case against Quattrocchi.

Though the case was not getting anywhere with investigating agencies reaching a dead end, both the BJP and CPM attacked the government for its stand before the apex court. "This was bound to happen. This government has always been trying to protect Quattrocchi," BJP spokesperson Ravishankar Prasad said, referring to the moves under UPA-I to give a clean chit to the Italian and help him access his money. "Quattrocchi knows too much and he has been receiving patronage," Prasad further said in thinly veiled reference to the Italian's links with Congress leaders. CPM general secretary Prakash Karat reacted by calling the decision an "example of how legal devices and delays are used to scuttle the case".

Congress was defiant and dismissed the protests with disdain. "It is a good step, though taken rather late. The Opposition has been bringing out the phantom of Bofors from the cupboard and slaying it again and again for the last 23 years," party spokesperson Manish Tiwari said.

Though both the BJP and CPM are expected to persist with their attack strategy, Congress has little reason to be perturbed. The memory of the kickbacks -- the first proven one concerning a defence deal -- has faded and the party has skilfully used the failure of the efforts under the BJP-controlled NDA to kickstart the investigations to defend itself against the charge of subversion of the case.

On Tuesday, Tiwari again stressed the same. "The case did not stand legal scrutiny in any court in India or abroad." He further said, "It is time that the era of character assassination over the issue going on in Indian politics for the last 23 years is brought to an end."

In the Supreme Court, the SG argued that with the decision taken by the Centre and CBI to close the case, there was no reason for the apex court to keep pending the PIL filed by advocate Ajay Agrawal questioning the consent given by the government to the British crown prosecution to defreeze Quattrocchi's London bank account, which was frozen on the allegation that part of the kickbacks in the Bofors deal was deposited there.

Agrawal said, "The CBI has been treating Quattrocchi as its son-in-law and the government was hand-in-glove in facilitating the escape of the Italian businessman from the clutches of law." He said it was a serious matter and hence the court should hear his PIL at length raising several important questions. The Bench fixed further hearing on December 11.

Attorney General Vahanvati appeared to have agreed with his predecessor Milon Banerjee, who had opined closure of the case. However, UPA-I could not act on the opinion to close the Bofors case as elections were round the corner and hence had to seek fresh legal opinion on the issue from the present AG.

Subramaniam said the decision was also driven by the fact that two Delhi High Court judgments, one in 2004 and the other in 2005, broke the basis of the chargesheet by terming that the evidence did not make out a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act and that there was no conspiracy among the accused.

Because of the two judgments, the government failed to extradite Quattrocchi, who was arrested on the basis of the pending Red Corner Notice, from Malaysia and Argentina, the SG said.

"We had to take a call at some time. We failed in Malaysia and in Argentina. All payments for Bofors guns were made in 1990. The ammunition purchased then had been fired and gone. The government had to take a call. And it had taken a call, that is not to keep the matter in an ambivalent state. If there is no corruption, what is the point in pursuing the matter," he said.
 

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