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February-March 2017


Volume 14 No. 1

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In This Issue Page 5 Exclusive Interview

Photograph: SP Guide Pubns

Ashok Kumar Gupta Secretary, Defence Production Page 6 Army Air Defence — An Update Army Air Defence (AAD) has the responsibility of providing Point AD to the national strategic assets like nuclear plants, oil refineries, military airbases, military industrial complexes, communication nodes, logistic nodes, gun areas, surfaceto-surface missiles and so on. Lt General Naresh Chand (Retd) Page 8 India’s Defence Budget 2017-18 The Finance Minister’s overall stated figure of `2,74,114 crore is, however, not what the Ministry of Defence (MoD) considers as India’s official defence budget. The difference amount between Finance Minister’s and MoD’s figures of `11,724 crore is allocated under what is considered Defence (Civil Estimates) which, inclusive of defence pension of `85,740 crore, does not form part of the official defence budget. Laxman Kumar Behera Page 10 Modernisation of Artillery and Infantry in the Indian Army Lt General V.K. Kapoor (Retd) Page 13 Battlefield Management System for the Indian Army — A Review Successful execution of fast moving operations, in the future, will require an accelerated decision-action cycle and an ability to conduct operations simultaneously within an all arms group. Lt General P.C. Katoch (Retd) Plus Appointments — Indian Army India Celebrates Republic Day News in Brief

9 14 15

Indian Army’s Dhruv helicopter

Army Aviation Turns 30 A Reality Check The Cheetah fatal accident on December 1, 2016, at Sukna Military Station and the subsequent grounding of the entire fleet for mandatory checks by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited has further eroded the confidence regarding the safety of the current fleet, which is the lifeline of troops deployed on the Siachen Glacier   Lt General B.S. Pawar (Retd)


n November 1, 2016, the Army Aviation Corps completed 30 years of its existence since its formation in1986. However, at the end of these30 years it continues to fly the outdated and vintage fleet of Cheetah/Chetak helicopters, is faced with a muddled and confused government policy on ownership of attack helicopters, and has seen no progress on the acquisition plans for the tactical battle

support helicopters (10- to12-tonne class) to enhance tactical lift capability and for special operations. On the plus side it has inducted the largest number of the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)-built advanced light helicopters (ALH/Dhruv) — approximately 70 Dhruvs are operational with the Army Aviation and two units of the armed version of the Dhruv called the Rudra are presently under various stages of raising. However, the critical issue of the Cheetah/Chetak helicopters replacement is

still far cry, notwithstanding the hype of the government-to-government deal with Russia with regards to the Ka-226T helicopter, which at best would be available in a time frame of three to four years, provided everything proceeds as planned. The non-availability of this crucial platform in adequate numbers in the next three to four years is going to seriously impact on the army’s high altitude operations and has very serious consequences for national security. The Cheetah fatal accident on December 1, 2016, at Sukna Mili-

Applied for 1/2017   SP’s Land Forces



>> LEAD story

Defence analysts are busy demystifying the defence budget presented by the Finance Minister in his budget presentation to the Parliament on February 1, 2017. We are using the term “demystifying” the budget because the government functionaries take a vicarious pleasure to so position the figures in the budget that someone who wishes to analyse the defence budget has to go through a plethora of figures before he can derive any meaningful deduction. Perhaps this is the reason that our parliamentarians are unable to discuss the defence budget

and the expenditure of `2,74,114 crore (approximately $42 billion) of the taxpayers money. The total defence budget of `2,74,114 crore is 1.63 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP) and 12.77 per cent of the Central Government expenditure (CGE) without counting the defence pension. Notwithstanding the above facts, this year’s defence budget is once again woefully inadequate for the type of replacements of weapons/modernisation required by the three Services. Currently in this editorial we are concerning ourselves mainly with the Army’s requirements. These range from the lowest category of weapons (personal weapons) in the hierarchy of weapons which is the assault rifle and the close quarter battle carbine to the crew served weapons such as the ­ anti-tank guided missiles, artillery howitzers (towed, truck mounted and self-propelled) air defence weapons (including shoulder-fired missiles and surface-to-air missiles).

Obsolescence of the weapons held by the army and the existing voids in infantry combat vehicles and battle tanks and the poor upgradation status is an ongoing story which is repeated every year. Last but not the least is the extremely poor state of the army aviation helicopter fleet which needs complete replacement of nearly 200 obsolete Cheeta and Chetak helicopters. The gravity of the situation can be gauged by the fact that even the wives of the army officers flying these machines had met the Defence Minister to express their fears and apprehensions regarding the safety of their husbands. From time to time our Chiefs and political leaders remind us that if there is a conflict in the future we will have to fight on two fronts and they take pains to put the nation at ease by stating that we are ready for all eventualities. Should the people not be told the truth about our potential to undertake defensive and offensive military opera-

tions, with the existing high degree of obsolescence in our weaponry? Many among us seem to feel that the region being nuclearised we do not need to worry about conventional military operations. If that be so why are we still keeping such large armed forces which we can ill afford to maintain. In fact a 40 division army, a 44 squadron air force and a 150 ship navy cannot be maintained on 1.63 per cent of the GDP and thus maintenance and modernisation of such a large force with this allocation is not possible. On the other hand, there are other equally competent military analysts who say that in view of unresolved borders we not only need to look after our western, northern and eastern frontiers but we also need a separate force to cater for insurgencies, terrorism and proxy wars which would present a simultaneous challenge along with conflicts at the borders, and this implies not just two-front but two-and-a-half-front capabil-

ity. The latter capability (half-front) is for the asymmetric wars mentioned above which would have to be fought simultaneously. So if the latter are to be believed then where do we stand today? Our analysis is that as presently equipped and configured we are incapable of fighting a two-front war against our potential adversaries. This should be of serious concern for the government. It is high time that the government took a complete review of our defence capabilities and current security doctrines and take appropriate measures to protect national interests. Please visit SP Guide Publications at Hall AB (AB3.46) during Aero India at Bengaluru from February 14-18, 2017.

Lt General V.K. Kapoor (Retd)

PhotographS: SP Guide Pubns, HAL

Indian Army’s advanced light helicopters (ALH) in flight (left); Rudra ALH-WSI (right)

tary Station while coming in to land and the subsequent grounding of the entire fleet for mandatory checks by HAL has further eroded the confidence regarding the safety of the current fleet — this affect is already being felt as the Cheetah helicopters are the lifeline of troops deployed on the Siachen Glacier.

Cheetah/Chetak Replacement The Cheetah/Chetak replacement programme continues to flounder despite the government-to-government agreement between India and Russia for the supply of 200 Kamov Ka-226T light helicopters under the ‘Make in India’ policy. Presently there is no clarity on as to how this project will move forward and both sides seem to be struggling to meet the challenging ‘Make in India’ requirement of building 50 per cent of the helicopters in India. While the HAL has been designated as the nodal agency for this critical programme along with Russian Helicopters (part of state-owned technology cooperation ROSTEC), there are a number of complex issues involved which need to be addressed in order to move ahead. The recent statement of the Russian Helicopters about their working with HAL to iron out the various contentious issues and that the signing of the contract is likely by year end


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

is a positive development,but its likely transformation into realty seems a distant dream in the current situation. The complexities involved in this project are far too many and one will have to wait and watch as to how these will be addressed and resolved eventually — the prospect of concluding a contract for the Ka-226T project anytime soon does not inspire much confidence. The Ka-226T helicopter, however, is a suitable platform for replacement of the Cheetah/ Chetak fleet and has been through the complete trial process in India along with Airbus Helicopter’s Fennec AS 550 C3 helicopter in 2013-14 — both helicopters had met all the desired operational parameters. The main issue in the Ka-226T deal is the overall composition of the helicopter in terms of various components and systems. Russian Helicopters, which has developed the Kamov 226T, has sourced its twin engines (Arrius 2G1 which constitutes almost one-third of the chopper’s cost), from the French company, Turbomeca. Other key systems and avionics have been sourced from some other companies in the global market. As per reports the Russian Government has accepted responsibility only for indigenising Russian components — a step which would result in a shortfall of the indigenisation levels required as per the

‘Make in India’ policy. This also means that HAL as the nodal agency on behalf of the Indian Government will have to negotiate separately with third country vendors for indigenising their components and systems especially the engines. There has however been a positive development on this crucial issue emanating from the recently concluded Farnborough Air Show. The HAL and French company,

There seems to be no clarity on the fate of the latest request for information (RFI) which was issued for the never ending reconnaissance and surveillance helicopters (RSH) programme for 197 helicopters

Safran Helicopter Engines (parent company of Turbomeca) have agreed to establish in India a support centre for helicopter engines, catering to their manufacturing and provision of maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facilities — this joint venture (JV) is expected to come up this year in Goa.This JV will initially cater to TM 333 and Shakti engines installed on the HALbuilt helicopters like the ALH Dhruv, Rudra and the light combat helicopter (LCH). Shakti is more powerful than the TM 333 and is the Indian name for Safran Ardiden 1H engine which is already being co-developed with HAL and produced under licence. It also seems likely that the engine for HAL is under development light utility helicopter (LUH) will subsequently also form part of this JV, as Safran’s Ardiden 1U engine is already fitted on the developmental model of LUH. However, whether the Arrius 2G engines fitted on the Kamov 226T helicopters will get included in the JV remains to be seen, as there are many imponderables and this vital aspect of the deal will be clear only after the final contract is inked. Another factor which needs to be kept in mind is that as per the government agreement, Russian Helicopters will deliver the first 60 helicopters in flyaway condition — these would be assembled entirely in Rus-

HAROP. Loiter. Locate. Eliminate

IAI’s HAROP: Searches like a UAS, attacks like a missile • Long range, sensor-to-shooter, long endurance • Launch from sealed canister • High quality dual EO/IR seeker • Man-in the-loop selective attack via 2 way data link • Top or slanted attack • Abort attack even during final dive • Highly effective warhead, pinpoint accuracy



Israel Pavilion Hall A, Stand A1-1a

>> LEAD story PhotographS: USAF, Russian Helicopters

future obligations to the Services in terms of large orders for additional ALHs and Rudras, while simultaneously addressing their critical maintenance and serviceability issues. It is crystal clear from the above that HAL’s Helicopter Division has already bitten more than it can chew and hence will it have the commitment and time to fulfil its obligations towards the crucial Ka-226T programme.

Current Status and Problem Areas

sia, with little scope for indigenisation. That would also be the case with the next 40 or so helicopters, shipped as kits from Russia to be assembled in India. This leaves a balance 100 helicopters for meeting the 50 per cent ‘Make in India’ goals over the entire fleet of 200. It is understood that some Indian private companies may also be part of this programme, especially to build Kamov 226T components and systems in India. It is important to note that this helicopter has entered service only in 2002 and has very little scope for export — presently it is in service with the Russian military only and has no footprint in the civil market. Keeping in mind the complexity of the case it is anybody’s guess whether this project will ever see the light of the day. In the meantime there seems to be no clarity on the fate of the latest request for information (RFI) which was issued for the never ending reconnaissance and surveillance helicopters (RSH) programme for 197 helicopters on October 31, 2014, in a ‘Buy and Make (Indian)’ approach. This programme envisaged a certain number of helicopters to be supplied by the selected original equipment manufacturer (OEM) in flyaway condition and the remaining numbers to be built at a production facility in India, by an Indian partner through licensed transfer of technology. Essentially, this RFI envisaged identification of probable Indian vendors (private or public), including those who would form joint ventures and establish production arrangements with an OEM so as to provide the helicopters, followed by licensed production in the country. However, the Kamov 226T agreement has left the fate of the 197 RSH project hanging in balance with no clarity from the government so far — while the RSH project has not been cancelled, total confusion reigns in the industry and the armed forces regarding its future involving 197 helicopters.

HAL Ventures The production of the Cheetah and Chetak helicopters by HAL has virtually come to halt and the production facility closed. In fact the non-availability of spares to keep the current fleet serviceable is the biggest challenge before the HAL and the Army Aviation. As an interim measure the HAL has fielded the Cheetal an upgraded version of the Cheetah helicopter with a more powerful engine. It is understood that 30 Cheetals will be produced by HAL (20 for the Indian Army and 10 for the Air Force) in the next two to three years as an interim measure to overcome the ongoing criticality for high


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

Need of the hour: AH-64D Apache Longbow attack helicopter (top) and Ka-226T light multi-role helicopter (above)

altitude operations. However, with the airframe remaining the same, safety and reliability will remain major concerns. Simultaneously, HAL’s new LUH project (3-tonne class) which is expected to make its first flight this month seems to be on track. According to HAL projections, the LUH would complete flight certification by mid2017 and enter production by the year-end. HAL is required to provide 187 LUHs in the overall requirement of 400 plus helicopters

The LCH is a state-ofthe-art attack helicopter capable of operating at high altitudes and compares with the best in the world — it recently participated in Air Force’s Iron Fist air power exercise and demonstrated its firepower and manoeuvring capabilities

by the armed forces in this category — these will be built at HAL’s new facility at Tumakuru (about 150 km from Bengaluru), where the foundation stone was laid by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January this year. It is important to note that the HAL’s main focus remains the LUH and the coveted light combat helicopter (LCH) projects with the LCH slated to get the initial operational clarence by end of this year. The LCH is a state-of-the-art attack helicopter capable of operating at high altitudes and compares with the best in the world — it recently participated in Air Force’s Iron Fist air power exercise and demonstrated its firepower and manoeuvring capabilities. The LCH is expected to cater to the requirements of Army and Air Force to the tune of 114 and 65 respectively and will be a game changer especially for operations in the mountains — an ideal asset for Kargil-like situations. The HAL is also expected to ensure that it meets the Prime Minister’s directive to roll out the first LUH by end of 2017. The success of the LUH programme in the time frame envisaged above may spell the death knell for the Ka-226T, if no headway is made for negotiating the contract by end of this year. The government may be needs to simultaneously keep the RSH programme also going forward to cater for inordinate delays and bottlenecks in the Ka-226T project. In addition, HAL’s helicopter division is also fully involved in meeting its current and

The army today holds the largest inventory of helicopters in the Indian military (300 plus) and these numbers will continue to grow with additional Dhruvs and Rudras being inducted in the coming decade — the Army Aviation is expected to have a fleet of approximately 200 Dhruvs and Rudras in the coming years. The army is also looking at inducting 114 LCHs to cater to its requirements in the mountains and high altitude areas. However, a major shortcoming with the Rudra and the under development LCH is that in their current configuration they do not have a suitable anti-tank guided missile (ATGM), the main weapon system of an attack/armed helicopter. The air version of the indigenously developed Nag ATGM, the Helina being developed by DRDO is not likely to be ready in the near future, leaving a critical void in the operational capability of these two types of helicopters. As an interim measure the MoD had cleared the fitment of three initial Rudra units with an ATGM ex import. Accordingly, trials were conducted and completed about three years back but nothing seems to have come of it — in contention were the PARS 3 of MBDA France and Spike-ER of Israel. This issue needs to be addressed on priority for an armed/attack helicopter without an ATGM merely remains a gunship thereby inhibiting the exploitation of its full potential. A major setback to the Army Aviation plans for transformation has been the government’s decision to give the 22 Apaches Mark III (Guardian) attack helicopters being acquired from US (Boeing) to the Air Force, despite the earlier decision of the government on the issue of ownership of attack helicopters being in the Army’s favour. Further, with the indigenously developed LCH induction around the corner the army’s projection of additional 33 Apaches is not likely to see the light of day. The Army Aviation will have resign to the idea of not having these state-of-the-art attack helicopters (the best in the world) as part of their inventory for employment with the Strike Corps.

Conclusion With the current dismal state of the Chetak and Cheetah fleet and serious maintenance and safety concerns, the writing is clearly on the wall. The maintenance of this fleet has now become a nightmare. As per reports, a major fallout of this situation has been fewer volunteers opting for the Army Aviation Corps, an elite arm of the Indian Army. In fact, in an article in India Today last year the wives of the army aviators had expressed their concern over the safety of their husbands continuing to fly these outdated machines. Some aviation experts have even gone to the extent of labelling them as ‘Flying Coffins’. There is understandable disquiet on this matter within India’s military aviation fraternity which needs to be taken serious note of, as this gravely impinges on operational preparedness.The Ka-226T is a suitable replacement platform and more importantly has proved its prowess in high altitude operations during trials. The government must work with the Russian Government in a time-bound manner in resolving all issues howsoever complex and sign the contract by the end of this year or else it will be another critical defence deal gone awry and the operational consequences far too serious. The HAL also needs to ensure that the LUH project meets its timelines and is available for induction in the first half of 2018.  SP

>> Exclusive interview Photograph: PIB

Focus on Domestic Manufacturing In a rare media interaction with SP’s Land Forces, Ashok Kumar Gupta, Secretary, Defence Production, outlined his vision for defence manufacturing in India and addressed a wide range of subjects including ‘Make in India’, DPP 2016, defence offsets, role of DPSUs, investment in R&D, delays in procurement decisions, blacklisting and other related issues SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): In your opinion, what are the new key points of DPP 2016 for a foreign OEM looking at Indian market? Secretary: India is in the midst of modernising its armed forces and it is estimated that $250 billion will be spent on capital procurement in the next 10 years. In the new Defence Procurement Procedure 2016, ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’, ‘Buy (Indian)’, ‘Buy & Make (Indian)’ are the most preferred categories which means that increasingly request for proposals (RFP) will be issued to the domestic industry. The only way for the foreign OEMs to leverage domestic demand is to tie up with domestic companies either for collaborative R&D followed by production or through transfer of technology for production through joint ventures or they can set up their own manufacturing base. In addition, a number of potential ‘Make’ projects have been identified by the department; which are likely to follow ‘Make’ procedure for development-cum-procurement. The foreign OEMs can collaborate with the Indian vendor, the prime contractor, for development for defence equipment. Provisions have also been introduced to allow foreign OEMs to select Indian production agency of its choice for transfer of technology for maintenance infrastructure. Moreover, offset implementation process has been made flexible by allowing change of Indian offset partners (IOPs) and offset components, even in signed contracts. Foreign OEMs are now not required to indicate the details of IOPs and products at the time of signing of contracts. Services as an avenue of offsets have been reinstated with certain conditionalities. SP’s: How exactly are the ‘Make in India’ initiatives for aerospace and defence sector being promoted? What has been the reaction of foreign OEMs to it till date? Secretary: ‘Make in India’ initiatives for aerospace and defence sector are being promoted though various policy initiatives and amendments in procurement procedures which would result in ease of doing business, encourage and facilitate Indian private sector to participate in defence manufacturing, nurturing R&D culture in defence. Following initiatives have been taken by the Department of Defence Production to boost the ‘Make in India’ in defence sector: l Foreign Direct Investment: FDI policy under which foreign investment is

allowed through automatic route up to 49 per cent and government route beyond 49 per cent wherever it is likely to result in access to modern technology or for other reasons to be recorded. l Industrial Licensing: The Defence Products List for the purpose of issuing industrial licences (ILs) under IDR Act has been revised and most of the components, parts, subsystems, testing equipment and production equipment have been removed from the list so as to reduce the entry barriers for the industry, particularly small and medium segment. The initial validity of the industrial licence has been increased from three years to 15 years with a provision to further extend it by three years on a case-to-case basis. l Defence Exports: – The list of military stores has been finalised and put in the public domain so as to make the process transparent and unambiguous. The process of receiving applications for no objection certificate (NOC) for export of military stores and for issuing NOC has been made online. –  The standard operating procedure (SOP) for the issue of NOC for export of military stores has been revised and put on the website. Under the revised SOP, the requirement of enduser certificate (EUC) to be counter-

Offset implementation process has been made flexible by allowing change of Indian offset partners (IOPs) and offset components, even in signed contracts. Foreign OEMs are now not required to indicate the details of IOPs and products at the time of signing of contracts.

signed/stamped by the government authorities has been done away with for the export of parts, components, subsystems, etc. – Recognising the need for promotion of defence exports to make the Indian defence industry economically sustainable, defence exports strategy outlining the various steps to be taken has been formulated and put up in public domain. l Defence Offsets: Offset implementation process has been made flexible by allowing change of Indian offset partners (IOPs) and offset components, even in signed contracts. Services as an avenue of offset have been reinstated with certain conditionalities. l Level Playing Field: – Exchange rate variation protection has been made applicable for Indian private sector at par with public sector undertakings for all categories of capital acquisitions. – The preferential treatment given to defence public sector undertakings (DPSUs) in excise duty/customs duty has been discontinued. As per the revised policy, all Indian industries (public and private) are subject to the same kind of excise and customs duty levies. l ‘Make’ Procedure: The ‘Make’ procedure has been revised to promote indigenous design, development and manufacture of defence equipment/platform. It provides for enhanced government funding of 90 per cent of development cost and preference to MSMEs for certain categories of projects, which will give a tremendous boost to manufacturing of indigenously designed products through collaborative process with Indian industry. l Buy (Indian-IDDM) in DPP 2016: One of the notable features of DPP 2016 is the introduction of a new procurement category ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’ by which priority has been accorded to procurement from Indian vendors of products that are indigenously designed, developed and manufactured. l Preference to Indigenous Procurement: In DPP 2016, preference has been provided to procurement under ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’, ‘Buy (Indian)’ and ‘Buy and Make (Indian)’ categories of capital acquisition over ‘Buy & Make’ or ‘Buy (Global)’ categories.

The foreign OEMs have exhibited a lot of enthusiasm to participate in ‘Make in India’ initiative. Several OEMs have entered into or are in the process of tie-ups with Indian defence companies for supply of defence equipment categorised as ‘Buy and Make (Indian)’ and ‘Buy and Make’. SP’s: India has a large inventory of ageing weapons and equipment. How do you see the ‘Make in India’ play out where upgrades are required? Secretary: The revised ‘Make’ procedure would be a significant driver for taking up upgrades of existing inventory of weapons and equipment. Under this procedure, the government has made provisions for 90 per cent funding of development cost. There is also a provision to take up development without government funding in low-risk projects. In both the cases there is assurance of orders. The upgrade projects, being lowrisk/low-investment projects, the Indian industry will be encouraged to take up such projects on priority. SP’s: There seems to be a lot of interest from big Indian corporates who want to invest in manufacturing in the defence sector. How are you going to ensure that quality and safety standards are met by these companies who are new entrants in this sector? Secretary: Delivery of defence equipment to armed forces by any company is subject to trials/testing and other quality checks prescribed as per terms and conditions of the contract. This ensures the quality of the item. SP’s: The defence offset policy has not led to any import of core technologies for the defence sector. Can you comment on this? Secretary: Defence offset guidelines encourage vendors for investment in terms of technology in Indian enterprises. They also provide for acquisition of critical technology by DRDO. l In case of transfer of technology to Indian enterprises (MSME), a multiplier of 1.5 is given. l Technology acquisition by DRDO has a multiplier up to a factor of 3 depending upon the rights of utilisation. The defence offset guidelines provide full freedom to the vendors in selection of avenues for offset discharge. The utilisation/ exploitation of any avenue is totally at the discretion of the vendor.  SP

1/2017   SP’s Land Forces


>> air defence Photograph: SP Guide Pubns

Upgraded Schilka Weapon System

Army Air Defence — An Update Army Air Defence (AAD) has the responsibility of providing Point AD to the national strategic assets like nuclear plants, oil refineries, military airbases, military industrial complexes, communication nodes, logistic nodes, gun areas, surface-tosurface missiles and so on

  Lt General Naresh Chand (Retd)


ir Power has been growing since the Wright Brothers conquered flight at Kitty Hawk on December 17, 1903. Making modest beginnings during World War I, military air power has manifested itself in multiple platforms ranging from fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, UAVs, ballistic missiles to cruise missiles. The role of air power includes reconnaissance, patrolling, command and control, deterrence and destruction of targets. In the current war scenario it has become a formidable instrument of military might. Threat to India has thus grown accordingly and the security environment around it is always on a short fuse. Viewed this in the backdrop of cross border terrorism, the situation becomes even more mercurial. In such an environment it is essential that all aspects of air defence (AD) become more operationally effective.

Current AD Capability Army Air Defence (AAD) has the responsibility of providing Point AD to the national strategic assets like nuclear plants, oil refineries, military airbases, military industrial complexes, communication nodes, logistic nodes, gun areas, surface-to-surface missiles and so on. It also provides Area AD to army offensive assets like armour and the strike corps. The current holding of AD weapons are of varying vintage ranging from 50 years old (L/70 gun) to more than three decades (Kvadrat Missile System- SAM 6). Tangushka was the last gun/ missile system inducted about 25 years ago. Induction of Akash missile system has started in 2016 but it has been thrust on the Army for a different role as it could not carry out the mobile role it was originally developed for.

Appraisal of Current Weapon Systems

The technology, especially in the field of ammunition, missiles, sensors and active seekers, has advanced very rapidly thus it is necessary to upgrade and replace the existing AD weapon systems at least every 15-20 years so that they remain current. Apart from the aspect of weapon obsolescence, there is a factor of shelf life of ammunition and missiles which effects their lethality, accuracy and safety. Considering the vintage, the current AAD picture is rather dismal when reviewed system by system. L/70 Gun System L/70 is the mainstay of AAD since 1964. when it was heralded as the most modern gun system with a fire control radar. It was effective against the air threat of the 1960s but it now completely obsolete. It is a miracle and sterling quality of production at Ordnance Factory (Gun Carriage Factory in Jabalpur) that the guns are still firing and fit in all aspects. The requirement is of a gun with a rapid rate of fire of about 2,000 rounds/min and an effective range of about 2,500 metres. L/70 gun provides Point AD to all the national strategic assets thus without a more modern gun, the


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

AD to these assets becomes very weak. L/70 was to be replaced by 2000, however there is no progress. The Defence Research and Development Organisation’s (DRDO) development effort has also failed. Not many gun systems are currently available but a possible choice was Skyshield of Rheinmetall AD but unfortunately the company has been blacklisted by India thus there is no hope even in the distant future for a successor system. The Army is looking at some of the systems available in the erstwhile East European nations but nothing concrete has emerged. Even if a gun is shortlisted, it may take at least a decade for the delivery to start under ‘Make in India’ programme. Notionally if 10 regiments have to be provided with the new guns then at the rate of one regiment per year, it will take 10 years to equip all the 10 regiments. That takes it to 2040 or so and if the gun remains current for even three decades, the time frame will be 2070. It is unlikely that the current guns and ammunition will be able to counter the air power of 2040-70. L/70 has also been upgraded jointly by the Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and the Gun Carriage Factory in Jabalpur; with electric power lay and electro-optical sighting system but this has not improved the effectiveness of the gun except that it does not need a fire control radar. The process of induction of this system is yet to start. 23mm Twin Gun This is a fair weather gun system of Russian origin which is more than three decades old however its rate of firing of 2,000 rounds/ minutes is very good. It is a light and mobile gun and ideally suited for supporting the field formations in plains and mountains. It was upgraded by BEL and Punj Lloyd in competition. Punj Lloyd has got the tender and they have joined hands with EVPU of Slovakia to provide the electro-optonic system. The upgrade includes power lay and electro-optical sighting system which will enhance its capability manifold and also provide it with night-firing capability. Schilka System It is a highly mobile system for supporting armour formations and is in service since the early 1970s. It came into limelight during the Yom Kippur War of 1973. Its successor was Tangushka, one regiment of which was procured, but for some reason no further procurement was carried out. The result is that the AAD is stuck with limited equipment which is obsolete and difficult to maintain. The Schilka upgrade is being carried out jointly by BEL with Elbit of Israel which includes a new powerful engine, digital computer, better electro-optical sighting system and a new fire control radar. The four barrel 23mm gun with a rate of fire of 3,400 rounds per minute has been retained and there is a provision for firing shoulder-fired missiles. 48 Schilkas will be upgraded. The induction has also started but it is very slow and may take more than a decade to upgrade all the 48 systems. It will be employed for another 20 years that means the gun and chassis will be about

seven decades old and may not be employable. Thus it necessary to identify more modern systems to complete the existing voids and also to replace the old systems.

Quick Reaction SAM (QRSAM) System The current system is OSA-AK which is a highly mobile system for the AD of armour formations. This system is more than 30 years old and needs to be replaced. DRDO’s effort to develop Trishul system did not succeed and a request for proposal (RFP) had been issued twice. The expected parameters of QRSAM are a range of not less than 15 km, altitude of more than 6 km and the ability to engage targets flying at 0-500 metres/seconds as well as hovering helicopters. QRSAM System should not be mixed with Low-Level Quick Reaction Missile System (LLQRM) which is an Indian Air Force (IAF) System. Following systems are available globally: Spyder SHORAD Missile System of Rafael-IAI (Israel). Spyder name is a combination of Python and Derby missiles which are integral to the Spyder System. Python has an IR dual waveband electrooptical imaging seeker with lock-on after launch, with infrared counter-countermeasures. Derby has an active radar seeker, lock on before launch and advanced programmable ECCM. Spyder has a maximum range of 15 km and altitude of 20-9,000 metres, can carry out simultaneous engagement of multiple targets, carry out ripple firing, is allweather and highly immune to countermeasures. The system is claimed to effectively counter all modern aerial threats including aircraft, helicopters, cruise missiles, UAVs and precision guided weapons. IAF has already acquired the system. Tor-M2 9M331 SHORAD Systemdesigned by Almaz-Antey of Russia. TorM2 is a fully-automated surface-to-air missile (SAM) system manufactured by Almaz-Antey’s Izhevsk Electromechanical Plant Kupol, to deliver effective air defence in jamming environments. The system can counter a wide range of targets including unmanned aerial vehicles, guided missiles, cruise missiles, aircraft, helicopters and high-precision weapons flying at very low to medium altitudes. The Tor-M2U SAM System is armed with 12 9M331 surface-to-air guided missiles as compared to six missiles in the earlier version. The missile’s high-explosive fragmentation warhead and an active proximity fuse allow it to destroy targets moving at speeds of 700 metres per second and altitudes of six km, within a range of 12 km. It can fire targets with a short stop of three to five seconds. The Tor family of SAM Systems is in service with the armed forces of many countries including China, Egypt and Russia. This is most suited to be a successor to OSA-AK. Surface Launched Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (SLAMRAAM). SLAMRAAM is a key player in Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems’ state-of-the-art integrated air and missile defence systems which can counter current and future cruise missile threats, and a wide

range of air breathing threats. SLAMRAAM is capable of defending manoeuvring land forces, high-value fixed assets and mass population centres. SLAMRAAM is the US Army’s domestic variant of the Norwegian Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS System). SLAMRAAM System uses the AMRAAM fire-and-forget missile, a surveillance radar, a fire distribution centre (FDC) and AMRAAM launchers. The SLAMRAAM launcher mounts six AMRAAM missiles on a turreted High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle which provides 360° coverage. Hawk-AMRAAM AD System. Raytheon and Kongsberg Defence have jointly developed the Hawk-AMRAAM AD System, which combines the capabilities of Hawk and AMRAAM missiles by integrating the system with FDC. The system can include the Sentinel radar and the Hawk AN/MPQ-61 high power illuminator for target tracking and illumination, although it is possible to hook up with any number of radars and missile systems to the FDC. It has been reported that Hawk has been upgraded and named Hawk21 with the FDC developed by Kongsberg as part of NASAM System. Raytheon jointly with Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace, continue to integrate new capabilities into NASAMS to develop and field highly capable and fully integrated solutions. So far, no headway has been made for the QRSAM System. Earlier media reported that QRSAM System Maitri will be developed jointly between DRDO and MBDA but it has made no progress. Another report mentioned Maitri with a 40-km range which was meant for the IAF but in view of the induction of Akash SAM System, also could be considerd are upgraded Tunguska and Pantsir of Rusia. IAF indicated that it is no longer required.

Medium Range SAM (MRSAM) System Kvadrat is the current system which is more than 35 years old and has the technology of early 1960s thus an RFP has been issued but later on withdrawn due to poor response. As DRDO’s Akash has not been found suitable for mobile role thus two regiments of Akash have been contracted for semi-static role. Meanwhile, DRDO has signed an MoU with Israel for the joint development of a missile system of about 70 km. So far, the Navy has carried out successful trials of the system embedded on a ship. This can easily be employed by the Army by mounting, it on suitable mobile platforms. Meanwhile, in the interim phase, the AAD may explore the possibility of importing a few regiments of Patriot Advance Capability-3 (PAC-3) from the US through the FMS route. PAC-3 is the obvious choice as it is warproven; has hit to kill technology; can engage aircrafts, helicopters, UAVs, cruise and tactical ballistic missiles. It is also deployed with many nations including the US. Shoulder-fired SAM System. The current system is Igla which is also in service with the Indian Navy and the Air Force. Russia has a improved Igla-S which is a natural successor to the current system.  SP

>> Defence Budget

India’s Defence Budget 2017-18 The Finance Minister’s overall stated figure of `2,74,114 crore is, however, not what the Ministry of Defence (MoD) considers as India’s official defence budget. The difference amount between Finance Minister’s and MoD’s figures of `11,724 crore is allocated under what is considered Defence (Civil Estimates) which, inclusive of defence pension of `85,740 crore, does not form part of the official defence budget.   Laxman Kumar Behera


hile presenting the union budget 2017-18 on February 1, 2017, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley allocated `3,59,854 crore ($55.36 billion) to the Ministry of Defence (MoD). Like in his previous budget, the Finance Minister also made certain changes in the format of the defence Demand for Grants (under which defence money is distributed among the armed forces and other defence agencies), bringing an element of further complexity of estimating various elements of what constitutes India’s official defence budget. The complexity apart, the bigger question that faces the defence community is whether the latest allocation is adequate to meet the security needs of the country. This article examines the latest defence allocation in the light of its possible impact on modernisation and operational preparedness of the defence forces.

Reconciling the Figures While presenting the union budget to the Parliament, the Finance Minister stated that “[for Defence expenditure excluding pensions, I have provided a sum of `2,74,114 crore including `86,488 crore for Defence capital.” The Finance Minister’s overall stated figure of `2,74,114 crore is, however, not what the Ministry of Defence (MoD) considers as India’s official defence budget. An attempt is made in Table 1 to reconcile the defence-related allocations provided in the union budget with the traditional format used by the MoD and compare it with the previous years’ allocation and expenditure. Using the MoD format, the defence budget for 2017-18 amounts to `2,62,390 crore. The difference amount (between Finance Minister’s and MoD’s figures) of `11,724 crore is allocated under what is considered Defence (Civil Estimates) which, inclusive of defence pension of `85,740 crore, does not form part of the official defence budget. A noticeable aspect of the Table 1 is the underutilisation of capital allocations provided in the 2016-17 budget, resulting in a surrender of `6,970 crore (8.1 per cent). The surrendered amount has largely been absorbed in the revenue expenditure which has increased from its original estimates by `5,876 crore. It is significant to note that the manpower driven defence budget is not unique to 201718. In the last several years, it has been a recurring feature with a debilitating effect on two vital elements of the defence budget revenue-stores and capital modernisation which together play a vital role in the operational preparedness of the armed forces.

Table 1: Official Defence Budget, 2016-17 and 2017-18 Revenue Expenditure (` in Crore)

Capital Expenditure (` in Crore)

Total (`in Crore)





2016-17 (BE)




2016-17 (RE)




2017-18 (BE)




Note: BE: Budget Estimate; RE: Revised Estimate. Figures for 2015-16 are actual expenditure

Table 2: Comparative Statistics of Defence Budget: 2016-17 & 2017-18 Defence Budget (` in Crore)


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

2017-18 262389.8

Growth of Defence Budget (%) Revenue Expenditure (` in Crore)





Growth of Revenue Expenditure (%)



Share of Revenue Expenditure in Defence Budget (%)







Capital Expenditure (` in Crore) Growth of Capital Expenditure (%) Share of Capital Expenditure in Defence Budget (%) Capital Acquisition (` in Crore)





Growth of Capital Acquisition (%)



Share of Defence Budget in GDP (%)



Share of Defence Budget in Central Government Expenditure (%) Defence Pension MoD’s Budget (` in Crore)







Growth in MoD’s Budget (%)



Share of MoD Budget in GDP (%)





Share of MoD Budget in Central Government Expenditure (%) Note: *Approximate figure.

Table 3: Modernisation Budget of the Armed Forces 2016-17 (BE)

2016-17 (RE)

2017-18 (BE)











% Increase in 2017-18 (BE) over 2016-17 (BE)

Air Force










Note: *Figures (in ` crore) for Army are approximate

2016-17 (BE)

2016-17 (RE)

2017-18 (BE)

% Increase in 2017-18 (BE) over 2016-17 (BE)

Aircraft & Aero-engine










Other Equipment









Rolling Stock Rashtriya Rifles Total

Share of the Defence Services Among the defence services, the Indian Army with a budget of `1,49,369 crore accounts for the biggest share in defence budget, followed by the Air Force, Navy, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Ordnance Factories (OFs) (Figure 2). The biggest share of the Army is primarily because of its overwhelmingly numerical superiority over the sister services. Accounting for over 85 per cent of the uniformed personnel, bulk of the Army’s budget goes into meeting the pay and allowances of the personnel. In 2017-18, only 17 per cent of Army’s total allocation is earmarked for capital expenditure. The comparative figures for the Air Force and Navy are 58 per cent and 51 per cent, respectively.

Impact on Modernisation

Table 4: Modernisation Budget of Army*









Note: *Figures (in ` crore) for army are approximate

The Highlights and the Major Trends The Table 2 provides comparative statistics of defence budget and related figures for 2016-17 and 2017-18. The distinct noticeable feature of the table is the further decline in the defence budget’s share in both Central Government expenditure and the GDP. With a share of 1.56 per cent in the estimated GDP of 2017-18, the defence budget is the lowest since 1956-57. Another major feature of the Table 2 is the further increase in the share of the

2016-17 249099.0

revenue expenditure in the total defence budget. The increase is primarily due to the hike in the manpower cost of the armed forces, which accounts for over 83 per cent (`11,071 crore) of the overall growth of `13,291 crore in the defence budget. It is significant to note that the manpower driven defence budget is not unique to 2017-18. In the last several years, it has been a recurring feature with a debilitating effect on two vital elements of the defence budget revenue-stores and capital modernisation which together play a vital role in the operational preparedness of the armed forces. As the Figure 1 succinctly illustrates, the combined share of these two elements has declined from 55 per cent in 2007-08 to 40 per cent in 2016-17. This does not augur well, especially when there exists a huge void in India’s defence preparedness, and the armed forces have grave shortages in many areas ranging from ammunition, assault rifles, bullet-proof jackets, night-fighting devices to howitzers, missiles, helicopters, fighters and warships. Needless to say that for a credible defence preparedness, the present ratio needs to change for better for which allocation under revenue stores and capital modernisation needs to be augmented substantially.

Table 5: Modernisation Budget (New Schemes and Committed Liabilities, 2016-17) Modernisation Budget (` in Crore)

New Schemes (` in Crore)

Committed Liabilities (` in Crore)

% Share of New Schemes

% Share of Committed Liabilities













Air Force












Tables 3 provides the modernisation budget of the three forces whereas the Table 4 shows separately for the Army. As can be seen, the overall allocation made in 201718 budget has declined, although marginally, over the previous allocation. Among the three forces, Air Force is the only service whose modernisation budget has increased whereas both the Army and Navy have witnessed a decline in their respective budgets. What is of greater concern is that underutilisation has become a recurring feature of India’s defence budget, despite numerous improvements in the procurement procedures undertaken by the MoD in the past two-and-a-half decades. The decline in the modernisation budget is a source of great concern, especially given the limited budgetary scope available for signing new contracts. In 2016-17, only 12 per cent of the total modernisation budget of `70,000 crore was available for signing new schemes, with the rest being earmarked for the committed liabilities arising out of contracts already signed (Table 5). It is, however, to be noted

>> Defence Budget Figure 1: Distribution of Defence Expenditure Among Major Elements

Figure 2: Share of Defence Services in Defence Budget 2017-18

100% 90%



























OFs 1%

80% 70% 60% 55


Air Force 22%

40% 30% 20%



10% 0%



7 00







9 00



0 01

Pay & Allowees






8 00


1 01





3 01


Modernisation and Stores





2 01


4 01




) (BE




Note: Pay and Allowances are of the three armed forces only. Stores include Repair and Refits of the Indian Navy

that this limited scope has not been fully exploited as there has been an underutilisation of a whopping `7,393 crore (10.5 per cent). The underutilisation is across the services, although the Army accounts for over 50 per cent of total unspent funds. What is of greater concern is that underutilisation has become a recurring feature of India’s defence budget, despite numerous improvements in the procurement procedures undertaken by the MoD in the past two-and-a-half decades. Given that steady modernisation is a prerequisite for building up a strong military capability, the MoD has a big task ahead to bring in efficiency and expeditiousness in the procurement process.

Make in India and Defence Production Unlike in the previous budget, the union budget has not provided any specific incentives to push the ‘Make in India’ initiative in the defence sector, although some industry-wide proposals have been promised. Among others, the government has promised to reduce income tax from present 30 per cent to 25 per cent

Navy 14%






Army 57%

for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) with an annual turnover of up to `50 crore. This is likely to benefit some 6,000 MSMEs which are presently supplying parts, components and subsystems to players like DRDO, defence public sector undertakings, ordnance factories and the large private companies. The lack of any specific incentive for the defence industry may be a source of disappoint, as industry has repeatedly demanded certain concession which are extended to other sectors. In the union budget itself, the Finance Minister extended the ‘Infrastructure Status’ to the ‘Affordable Housing’, sector, allowing the industry in that sector to avail certain tax-related benefits. Needless to say, Infrastructure Status is one of several demands long requested by the defence industry. Within the defence budget, however, there has been a small allocation of `44.63 crore made for porototype development under the ‘Make’ procedures which have recently been revised by the MoD and some 23 projects have been identified for execution. Of the total amount, `30.08 crore

Note: Army includes National Cadet Corps (NCC), Rashtriya Rifles (RR), Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS), Inspection Organisation and Military Farms

is earmarked for Army and the balance `14.55 crore for the Air Force.

Conclusion The meagre increase of 5 per cent in the official defence budget is grossly inadequate

What is of greater concern is that underutilisation has become a recurring feature of India’s defence budget, despite numerous improvements in the procurement procedures undertaken by the MoD in the past two-and-a-half decades

especially in view of the vast void existing in military capability and the latest budget’s negative incremental effect on modernisation and operational preparedness. There is a need to augment substantial resources, particularly under two critical heads of the defence budget — stores and capital procurement — which have come under severe pressure in the last several years with a huge negative consequence on India’s defence preparedness. From the MoD’s perspective, while the demand for higher resource is a genuine one, it must also be fully geared up to utilise the available resources in a time-bound manner. There is hardly any merit in asking for more resources while the present capacity to utilise the available resources, particularly those under the capital head, is constrained. The defence establishment must, therefore, look inward and find lasting solutions to procurement impediments. At the same time, the MoD also needs to look at the current profile of defence budget and find out any scope for controlling manpower cost so as to allow other items of expenditure to grow in a healthy manner.  SP

Appointments — Indian Army

Lieutenant General Abhay Krishna took over as the GOC-in C of South Western Command on January 20, 2017. He was commissioned into the Rajputana Rifles in 1980 and in a career spanning over 37 years he has tenanted active combat leadership roles at every stage of command in the Army. He has a distinct service profile, covering all military theatres ranging from counter-insurgency and anti-terrorism operations in the Eastern and Northern commands, commanding troops in High Altitude Areas of Ladakh and Sikkim to mechanised operations in Rajasthan and Punjab.

Lieutenant General Jagbir Singh Cheema takes over as Deputy Chief of the Army Staff (Information Systems and Training) on February 1, 2017. He has a distinguished career spanning more than 38 years during which he has tenanted critical command, staff and instructional appointments at various levels. The General Officer has vast operational experience across the entire spectrum of conflict in both conventional and subconventional scenarios along the Western and Northern Fronts. He was earlier Director General of Infantry in Integrated Headquarters of MoD (Army).

Lieutenant General Suresh Sharma took over as Engineer-in-Chief of the Indian Army on February 1, 2017. In his capacity as Engineer-Chief, in addition to steering the Corps of Engineers, he will serve as the Principal Advisor to Chiefs of Army, Navy, Air Force and the Ministry of Defence on all matters pertaining to engineering works and services. The General Officer has held key operational logistics appointments in an Infantry Brigade along the line of control (LoC) and an Infantry Division & Strike Corps in the South Western Theatre.

1/2017   SP’s Land Forces


>> Modernisation

Modernisation of Artillery and Infantry in the Indian Army Attempts are now being made to resurrect and fulfil its long-postponed 1999 Field Artillery Rationalisation Plan (FARP), under which the army aims to import, locally develop, and licence-produce around 3,000, 155mm howitzers of various categories to equip 220-odd artillery regiments for an estimated `56,000 crore to `63,000 crore Photograph: US Army

  Lt General V.K. Kapoor (Retd)


s part of its artillery modernisation plan, the Indian Army is looking at inducting several types of howitzers through in-house manufacture by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)/Ordnance Factory Board (OFB), inter-governmental pacts and global tenders. The last major acquisition of towed gun-howitzers was that of 400 pieces of 155mm/39-calibre FH-77B howitzers with a range of 30 km from Bofors of Sweden in 1987. This gun proved its mettle in the Kargil conflict. After about 25 years of neglect the artillery modernisation continues to stagnate. Attempts are being made to resurrect and fulfil its long-postponed 1999 Field Artillery Rationalisation Plan (FARP), under which the army aims to import, locally develop, and licence-produce around 3,000, 155mm howitzers of various categories to equip 220-odd artillery regiments for an estimated `56,000 crore to `63,000 crore. These include 1,580 towed gun systems (TGS), 814 mounted gun systems (MGS), 100 self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) — all of which are 155mm/52-caliber, and 145 BAE Systems M777 155mm/39calibre lightweight howitzers for the mountains. Locally upgraded and retrofitted guns will make up additional numbers.

Trials of 155mm Towed Howitzers of Nexter and Elbit Systems Trials involving two competing 155mm/52-calibre towed guns for the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) 2011-12 tender for 1,580 such platforms concluded in November 2015. The two guns are currently undergoing General Staff evaluation by the army before one is shortlisted and price negotiations begin. Trials for two systems namely the Nexter’s “Trajan” 155mm/52-calibre howitzer, and Israels ATHOS 2052 gun built by Elbit were required to undergo the supplementary trials from mid-2015 after completing desert and high-altitude firings in 2013-14. The army plans to acquire 400 guns under the Defence Procurement Procedure’s (DPP) ‘Buy and Make’ category and licence-build the remaining 1,180 howitzers. Nexter is a French Government company formerly called GIAT has a tie-up with Larsen & Toubro (L&T) and Elbit from Israel has tied up with the Kalyani Group/Bharat Forge in Pune, but who will be the designated manufacturer of the shortlisted howitzer is presently not known.

Self-Propelled Howitzers (SPH) K9 Vajra-T: In December 2015 the MoD began price negotiations with Larsen & Toubro for 100 modified South Korean SPHs, worth around `5,600 crore. The K9 VajraT, an L&T version of Samsung Techwin’s K9 Thunder 155mm/52-calibre gun customised for India’s 2012 SPH tender, was


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

M777 Towed Howitzers (155mm/39-calibre) Mobile forces require quality systems that are quick and easy to transport. Through the innovative use of titanium and aluminium alloys, the M777 is rapidly deployable and consistently accurate. Highly portable by land, sea and air, the system features a minimal logistical footprint alongside maximum reliability. This means that it can be frequently moved and re-deployed, maximising survivability, without encountering the IED risks that selfpropelled systems face. The weapon can strike over extended distances, regardless of terrain and obstacles. It is compatible with all standard ammunition types, as well as advanced rounds such as Bonus and Excalibur. Its strengths have been proven in battle, particularly in Afghanistan where it has been in service since 2006. Over 40,000 rounds fired have proven its simple, dependable operation, even in harsh desert climates.

Technical Data Range l Maximum Unassisted: 24.7 km l Maximum Assisted: 30+ km Rate of Fire l Intense: 5 rounds per minute for upto 2 minutes l Sustained: 2 rounds per minute Into/Out of Action l Emplacement: < 3minutes l Displacement: < 2minutes Pointing limits l Elevation: +1,275mm l Depression: -43mm l Traverse (on carriage): 400mm left and right (6,400mm through quickswitch) Ammunition l All current developmental US and NATO standard 155mm projectiles and charges including Modular Artillery Charge System Mobility l Maximum Road Speed: 88 kmph (55 mph) l Cross Country: 24 kmph (15 mph) Towing Vehicles: MTVR, FMTV, M800, M900, 5 tonne Trucks, any 2.5 tonne Truck, HMMWV in Local Area Fixed-wing: C130, C141, C17, C5, Roll-on, Roll-off/LVAD Rotary-wing: CH53E, CH47 D, MV22.  SP

Source: BAE Systems

shortlisted for acquisition in late September 2015 following trials the previous year. In these the K9 bested Russia’s MSTA-S selfpropelled gun, which had been modified to 155mm/52-calibre standard and mounted on a T-72 tank chassis. According to industry sources the K9, which is being procured under the DPP 2012 ‘Buy Global’ category, will be built at L&T’s Talegaon facility near Pune in Maharashtra. This classification permits domestic companies to enter into tie-ups with the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to offer cooperatively developed equipment and platforms to the Indian military. The K9 is expected to contain some 13 major indigenous subsystems, including its fire control, ammunition handling, and nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) system and muzzle velocity radar, to help it bypass the 30 per cent offset obligation. Military sources say the SPH deal is likely to be signed during the upcoming financial year, beginning April 1, and includes a follow-on option for an additional 50 K9 guns. Catapult the Interim Solution: In the interim the army is expected to induct 40 indigenously developed Catapult Mk II SPHs, which mount a 130mm gun on the chassis of the locally designed Arjun MBT. These will replace an equal number of Catapult Mk Is, designed in the early 1980s by mating the M-46 weapons onto the lengthened chassis of an OFB-built Vijayanta (Vickers Mk 1) MBT.

145 Ultra Light Howitzers (M777) In May 2015 the MoD approved the import of 145 M777s along with Selex Laser Inertial Pointing Systems (LINAPS) via the US foreign military sales (FMS) programme. On November 16, 2016, the Cabinet Committee on Security chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi cleared the acquisition of the guns from the US in a government-to-government deal worth $737 million (approx `5,000 crore). Of the 145 M777 howitzers, 120 will be assembled, integrated and tested in India with BAE Systems selecting Mahendra as its business partner. The first two howitzers will be delivered after six months of the contract being inked, with the others following at the rate of two per month. The United States submitted its letter of acceptance (LoA) sanctioning India’s purchase of 145 M777s in December 2016. Other than the upwardly revised tender price, the LoA included delivery schedules, guarantees, and after-sales technical, material, and spares support. BAE Systems is also believed to have submitted to the MoD its list of offset agreements with local companies, valued at 30 per cent of the overall contract value and estimated at around `1,400 crore ($215 million). The deal involves a significant ‘Make in India’ component. Mahindra is expected to bag a major share of the contract. The M777 purchase is meant to equip the army’s 17 Mountain Strike Corps, which is presently being raised for deployment along the line of actual control (LAC) with China.

>> Modernisation Photograph: Nexter

The M777 matches the firepower of current generation 155mm towed systems at less than half the weight. The howitzer is equipped with a 39-calibre barrel. The muzzle velocity (at Charge 8 super) is 827 m/s. The maximum firing range is 24.7 km with unassisted rounds and 30 km with rocketassisted rounds. Excalibur Munitions: The M777A2 can fire the Raytheon/Bofors XM982 Excalibur GPS/Inertial Navigation-guided extended-range 155mm projectiles using the Modular Artillery Charge Systems (MACS). Excalibur has a maximum range of 40 to 57 km and accuracy of 10 m. The M777 is able to deliver up to five rounds a minute under intense firing conditions and is able to provide a sustained rate of fire of two rounds a minute.

Indigenous Efforts to Manufacture 155mm Howitzer (Dhanush) The Ordnance Factories Board has been tasked to produce a 155mm/45-calibre howitzer based on the transfer of technology (ToT) obtained from Bofors in the 1980s. The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) approved a proposal from the OFB to manufacture 144 pieces of 155mm/45calibre howitzers with the option to acquire another 400 provided the prototypes successfully meet the army’s GSQR in user trials. Meanwhile, the DRDO has embarked on its own venture to design and develop a 155mm howitzer in partnership with a private sector company.

Acquisition of 814 Truck-mounted Guns This has been approved by the DAC in November 2014 will be undertaken under the ‘Buy and Make in India’ category with transfer of technology. While the first 100 guns will be imported, the remaining 714 will be produced in India. 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, as reported by the media. The total project cost is estimated to be `15,750 crore.

Infantry Modernisation The Future Infantry Soldier as a System (F-INSAS) project was mooted in 2005 and it aimed at deploying a fully networked, all-weather, and all-terrain infantry, with enhanced firepower and the mobility to operate in the digitalised battlefield. This involved a mix of imported and locally developed systems, to equip all battalions of infantry and Rashtriya Rifles with a modular, multi-calibre suite of weapons and body armour. The entire capability desired includes target acquisition, communications, and portable surveillance equipment — including third-generation night-vision devices, as well as computers capable of transmitting and uploading voice, data, and video clips on wrist displays for soldiers and clipboards for commanders. Additionally, integrated ballistic helmets with head-up displays (HUDs), miniature radios, global positioning systems, and portable power packs complete the F-INSAS makeover. The concern is that not even a single part of the project has made any progress.

In December 2015 the MoD began price negotiations with Larsen & Toubro for 100 modified South Korean SPHs, worth around `5,600 crore

Trajan 155mm/52-calibre towed gun from Nexter Systems

Assault Rifles Army is on the lookout for assault rifles (AR) to replace the INSAS 5.56mm rifles with technologically superior weapons. The MoD issued the tender for 66,000, 5.56mm multi-calibre assault rifles (with interchangeable barrels of 5.56mm and 7.62mm calibres) out of a total requirement of about 2,00,000 assault rifles in November 2011 to 43 overseas vendors. Five vendors responded positively. However, all five vendors comprising Italian manufacturer Beretta’s ARX160, the Czech Republic-based CZ’s 805 BREN, Israel Weapon Industries’ (IWI) ACE, and US-based Colt’s Combat Rifle were rejected by the army following field trials in the western Rajasthan desert and in high-altitude regions. The military wisdom till now was that the 5.56mm rifle was better for conventional war because it generally injured an enemy soldier, tying down at least two of his colleagues to carry him in the battlefield. Conversely, the 7.62mm rifle was better for counter-insurgency since terrorists had to be killed at the first instance, eliminating the risk of “suicide bombing”. Soldiers largely use the 7.62mm AK-47 rifles for counterinsurgency operations in Kashmir and the North East, even though the infantry is saddled with the indigenous glitch-prone 5.56mm INSAS (Indian small arms system) rifles. The fully-automatic DRDO designed Excalibur, which fires 5.56 x 45mm ammunition, is a much-improved version of INSAS rifle that entered service in 1994-95. But the army now wants 7.62mm rifles for greater lethality. Thus the army has re-launched its quest for a modern imported assault rifle, after recently rejecting the indigenous Excalibur, in order to plug a vital operational gap. The army is once again sending out its global request for information (RFI) for 7.62x51mm assault rifle. The issue that was discussed in April 2016 during the Army Commanders’ Conference was whether the force required a 7.62mm rifle that could kill the enemy or a 5.56mm rifle that could incapacitate the enemy soldiers and the decision was in favour of the former calibre. The Army Commanders unanimously opted to import the more powerful 7.62x51mm rifle for its infantry battalions and its100 odd counterinsurgency units (both Rashtriya Rifles and Assam Rifles). The indigenous Excalibur is an upgraded version of the DRDO-designed Indian Small Arms System (INSAS) 5.56x45mm assault rifle. The INSAS was rejected by the army in 2010 for being “operationally inadequate”. The gas-operated, fully automatic rifle has a foldable butt, a Picatinny rail for sights, sensors and bipods, and its polycarbonate magazine is superior to that of the INSAS rifle, known to frequently crack in extreme hot and cold climates. The Excalibur’s barrel is 4mm shorter than the INSAS model and its hand guard is smaller. The DRDO is also designing a second version of the Excalibur,

the AR-2 that fires 7.62x39mm rounds used by AK-47. The AR-2 will be offered as an alternative to the AK-47, Russian origin, assault rifle. Till the new assault rifle becomes a standard weapon Excalibur may be used in the interim to replenish stocks.

Carbines For over five years the Indian1 Army has Allisson Creative 2.pdf 25/10/16 operatedAllisson without a CQB carbine, a basic Creative 2.pdf 1 25/10/16 infantry weapon, essential to a force which claims to be among the best in the world, ever ready to take on any challenge. The Ministry of Defence cancelled the December 2010 tender for 44,618, 5.56mm close quarter battle (CQB) carbines and 33.6 million rounds of ammunition on September 29, 2016. Official sources said the MoD

now aims to ‘fast-track’ the long-delayed CQB procurement for the Indian Army via an ‘empowered committee’, within the next 12-14 months. But the request for proposal (RFP) for the same quantity of carbines and ammunition, likely to be dispatched by early 2017 will not include reflex and passive night sights and visible and invisible laser spot designators that will be acquired separately. The original procurement, for which the Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) ACE carbine was shortlisted along with the rival Italian Beretta’s ARX-160 model following the 2011-14 trials, was terminated following differences over the weapon systems sights and irregularities in the evaluation process. The MoD’s Directorate General of Quality Assurance (DGQA) had certain objections which scuttled the procurement process. The proposed CQB carbine RFP is expected to be on the same lines as the earlier one in which the carbine was required to weigh less than 3 kg, fire 600 rounds per minute to a distance of 250-300 metres and be capable of operating in extreme cold and hot temperatures. It would also need to be fitted with a Picatinny rail for the sights, which would be procured separately, and multipurpose detachable bayonets. The weapons will be acquired under the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016 ‘Buy and Make’ 3:44 PM category. The selected CQB vendor would be 3:44 PM required to transfer technology, in all likelihood, to India’s state-owned OFB to licencebuild some three to four lakh carbines. These would equip the Indian Army’s 359-odd infantry battalions and its 66 specialised Rashtriya Rifles or counter-insurgency units and eventually India’s paramilitaries and provincial police forces.  SP














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+91 11 4120 0400 +91 11 4120 0405


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25/10/16 4:10 PM

1/2017   SP’s Land Forces



Kornet-EM New Capabilities of Antitank Guided Missile Systems


ntitank guided missile systems (ATGM) have been developed and produced globally for already half a century. Since then they became the most popular and wanted type of high precision weapons (HPW) thanks to their usability and relatively low cost. ATGM systems today are not just a specialized anti-tank weapon, they are also efficiently used to engage a wide range of other small dimension targets like lightly armoured and soft-skinned vehicles, various fortifications, manpower and elements of enemy’s infrastructure. The IIIrd generation Kornet-E system developed by KBP and adopted in 1998 features a laser beam riding guidance system. It was the first ATGM system completely jamming proof and capable of firing on the move. As of today the Kornet-E ATGM system with a firing range of 5500 m is the most state-of-the-art specimen of multipurpose tactical short range weapon system which uses missiles with tandem shaped charge warheads for engagement of primarily heavily protected targets (tanks, pillboxes and the like) and missiles with high explosive warheads for engagement of a wide range of targets posing threat on a battlefield. A future ATGM system must be a versatile defensive-offensive guided weapon, whose portable and combat vehicle transportable modifications ensure a wide range of applications in close range tactical zone in various combat environments. A KBP-designed versatile Kornet-EM ATGW meets the latest requirements to a future ATGM system. Its state-of-the-art engineering solutions endow Kornet-EM system with a series of new qualities . The use of technical vision with automatic target tracker makes it possible to exclude an operator from missile guidance process and in fact implements the “fire-and-forget” principle without using expensive seekers in the missile. This gives a 5-times increase in accuracy of target tracking during real combat use and high hit probability at any system operating range which is twice higher than that of the Kornet-E ATGM system. Engagement of targets in automatic mode reduces psychophysical stress to oper-

Kornet-EM Sytem Main Performance Specifications of the System

Firing range, m – minimum 150 – maximum 10000 Guidance system automatic, beam riding guidance Jamming immunity high Number of targets engaged simultaneously by a salvo 2 Armour penetration by shaped charge warhead, mm 1100-1300 TNT equivalent of high explosive warhead 7 Ammunition load, pcs 16 including ready-to-fire missiles 8 ators, requirements to their skills and duration of their training. The block-modular principle of system design traditionally used for the Kornet family makes it possible to install both one and two automatic launchers onto a wide range of relatively inexpensive low load bearing capacity platforms of various origin (1 - 1.2 tons for single launcher version and 1.7 - 1.9 tons for double launcher version). The combat vehicle with two launchers ensures simultaneous salvo firing against two targets, this significantly increasing the system’s firing rate and number of targets handled. Similar to Kornet-E, the KornetEM system retains salvo firing capability

9M133FM-3 ATGM with HE warhead

with two missiles in one beam against one target to get over active protection systems. The system’s firing range was almost doubled – up to 10 km. Increase of firing range and accuracy and use of automatic target tracker make it possible to track both slow ground targets and faster targets. This helps the Kornet-EM system meet requirements essentially new for antitank guided weapon systems – engagement of small size aerial targets (UAV, helicopters and attacking airplanes). Efficient engagement of aerial targets by Kornet-EM system is ensured by combination of automatic high precision guidance

9M133M-2 ATGM with tandem shaped charge warhead

Main Performance Specifications

Flight range TNT equivalent, kg Target sensor Maximum flight speed, m/s Weight with launch tube, kg Length of launch tube, mm


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

system and guided missile with thermobaric WH with impact and proximity target sensor and flight range of up to 10 km. The use of proximity target sensor guarantees reliable engagement of aerial targets at any range. Combined with powerful high explosive warhead the proximity target sensor makes it possible to compensate possible misses by destruction of UAV (or helicopters) by overpressure. The maximum flight range of the missile being equal to 10 km ensures KornetEM system’s advantage in fighting helicopters as it enables the system to fire from a stand-off distance. The Kornet-EM system includes:  combat vehicle with two automatic launchers and operator’s panel with a display. Automatic launcher with four readyto-fire guided missiles thereon is fitted with TV+IR sight incorporating high resolution TV cameras and third generation thermal imager, built-in laser range-finder and laser missile guidance channel and an automatic target tracker with laying drives;  guided missile with HE warhead with impact and proximity target sensor and an antitank guided missile with firing range of up to 10 km;  antitank guided missile with a maximum firing range of 8000 m and shaped charge warhead armour penetration of 1100 - 1300 mm which enables the Kornet-EM system to engage contemporary and future tanks bearing in mind the tendency to growth of their armour protection. The Kornet-EM missiles are compatible with portable 9P163M-2 launcher with variable magnification sighting channel (12x and 20x), fitted with a third generation thermal imager. Comparative analysis of the Kornet-EM system performance specifications with those of its foreign counterparts shows that in the aggregate the former 3.0 - 5.0 times exceeds the latter in terms of combat efficiency at the same time being simpler in use and maintenance and featuring 3 - 4 times cheaper ammunition which as an expendable component to great extent defines army operating costs.  SP

Main Performance Specifications

150-10000 7 impact and proximity 320 33 1210

Flight range Armour penetration, mm Maximum flight speed, m/s Weight with launch tube, kg Length of launch tube, mm

150-8000 1100-1300 300 31 1210

>> technology

Battlefield Management System for the Indian Army — A Review Successful execution of fast moving operations, in the future, will require an accelerated decision-action cycle and an ability to conduct operations simultaneously within an all arms group Photograph: Indian Army

  Lt General P.C. Katoch (Retd)


Battlefield Management System (BMS) is vital in modern warfare as it enables faster decision by commanders at all echelons, better decision due to reliable operational information provided in real time and ability to quickly close the sensor to shooter loop. Situational awareness existing in the Indian Army is presently on ad hoc basis whereas the requirement is of an integrated network system. Future military operations will be combined and joint comprising of all arms and inter-service elements. These operations will require units and sub-units of other arms to operate subordinated or in cooperation with each other. Also, successful execution of fast moving operations will require an accelerated decision-action cycle and an ability to conduct operations simultaneously within an all arms group. The key to success will lie in effective command and control across the force, therefore, commanders at all levels, more so at the cutting-edge level require pertinent information in order to enhance their decision making and command capability. Harnessing information technology here will act as a force multiplier to enhance operational effectiveness of commanders and troops at all levels by enabling exchange, filtering and processing of ever increasing amounts of digital information presently available but not integrated. Most foreign armies including those that were deployed in operations abroad have situational awareness packages with the essential integration tool of various types — a Battlefield Management System.

Project BMS Project BMS was envisaged by the Indian Army to enable a faster decision process by commanders at all echelons, enable better decision due to reliable operational information provided in real time and have the ability to quickly close the sensor to shooter loop by integrating all surveillance means to facilitate engagement through an automated decision support and command and control system, exploiting technology for mission accomplishment in the Tactical Battle Area (TBA) by rapid acquisition, processing and transfer of information, enhanced situational awareness, capability to react to information, sharpen ability to synchronise and direct fire, plus establish and maintain overwhelming operational tempo. The system customised to the specific army requirement, needs to be first integrated and tested in a controlled environment for which a test-bed laboratory will need to be established. After testing in the laboratory conditions, validation trials of the system will be carried out in field conditions. After successful validation of the system in the field, the process for equipping will begin. The Army was late in conceiving this system, in that, planning for networkcentric warfare (NCW) capabilities below Brigade HQ level was not originally thought of along with other Operational Information Systems. The BMS will comprise a tactical hand-held computer with individual

infantry in action during an exercise

war-fighter and tactical computers at Battle Group HQ and combat vehicles enabling generation of common operational picture by integrating inputs from all relevant sources by integrated use of GIS and GPS with a high data rate. Phase I of Project BMS comprising test-bed laboratory and field trials at test-bed location of one Combat Group and three Infantry Battalion Groups by 2012 has been inordinately delayed, initially three years lost due to indecision within the Army concerning delimitation between the BMS and the Future Infantry Soldier as a System (F-INSAS) under devel-

Project BMS was envisaged by the Indian Army to enable a faster decision process by commanders at all echelons, enable better decisions due to reliable operational information provided in real time and have the ability to quickly close the sensor to shooter loop by integrating all surveillance means

opment by the Infantry and concurrent fallout in re-ordering of the feasibility study. The Infantry insisted in handling Phase 3 of F-INSAS (Computer and Radio Sub-systems plus Software Integration) by themselves while DGIS was already developing the BMS including for Infantry. The BMS design caters for lightweight, ergonomics and long-range communication over portable SATCOM (Team/Troop Leader level), and sensor integration is integral to the project. The BMS sought by the Army is to perform a variety of operational situational awareness and decision support functions at a battalion/combat group level. The lowest level to which the system will be connected is individual soldier/combat platform and the highest level will be the battalion/regiment commander integrating to the Tac C3I System through the CIDSS, enabling a common operational picture, integrating all sources through integrated use of GIS and GPS, will be a highly mobile and with high data rate. The communications should not interfere with the legacy communications; optimally utilise bandwidth available involving voice, data, imageries video streaming; scalable ensuring availability from being man-portable to being fitted in combat vehicles. For a BMS to be successful there is a need for a reliable, robust, resilient and efficient communication system that assures that the network is always functional. Net-centricity warrants a paradigm shift from voice centric to data centric systems and networks eventually enabling NCW capabilities. For BMS communications the Indian Army would be looking for long ranges, high bandwidth data transmission (live streaming), facilitating messaging including voice mail, quickly deployable, self-configuring and self-healing networks, easy to

customise, rolling coverage and interoperability. The focus will have to be on change in network topology, non-line of sight communications, spectrum management, network management systems, QoS (including latency, assured delivery, jitter), security of communications, networks and storage, robustness and authentication. Bandwidth requirements for the BMS need to be viewed keeping in mind the incremental requirements that would be required progressively over the years. A conservative approach by the Army at this stage, which is likely due to the limitations of legacy communication equipment, could limit exploitation of future technology.

Progress Over the Years In end 2011, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) approved the BMS as a ‘Make India’ project, following which an Integrated Project Management Study (IPMT) was completed. The expression of interest (EoI) was prepared and the case for empanelment of industry to receive the EoI was pending with the Department of Defence Production (DoDP) and was expected to be issued to the industry by August-September 2013. Thereafter, it was envisaged to shortlist two Developing Agencies (DA) by about March 2014. Subsequently, design phase was expected to commence by July 2014, limited prototype tested in laboratory by end December 2015 and finally, prototypes developed and fielded for user evaluation by December 2016 (instead of earlier schedule of 2012). By then the cascading effect by then had already delayed completion of Phase 2 (Equipping) from initial plan of 2017 to 2021 and Phase 3 (Change Management and Upgradation of System) from 2022 to 2026 as per then status. This

1/2017   SP’s Land Forces


>> technology / republic day delayed schedule too was considered possible only if there were no further hurdles. In February 2015, the EoI for BMS was finally issued to 14 domestic companies. However, only two consortiums, Tata Power SED-Larsen & Toubro, and Bharat Electronics-Rolta India, qualified the bids. In February 2016, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) signalled these two Indian consortia, one led by Tata Power (Strategic Engineering Division) and the other led by Bharat Electronics (BEL), to develop a BMS prototype for the Indian Army, which could eventually generate about `40,000-50,000 crore worth of procurement for the Army. As per media reports, MoD informed BEL and Tata Power SED in writing that the consortia they respectively lead had been selected out of four that had given proposals in response to the MoD’s tender. MoD has instructed both consortia, one consisting of BEL and Rolta India, and the other comprising of Tata Power SED and Larsen & Toubro (L&T), to register “special purpose companies” for this project. Each of these development agencies will separately develop a working BMS. Each BMS prototype is to have four variants: one, for the infantry battalion group; two, for combat group (armour); three, for combat group (mechanised infantry); and, four, for Special Forces. Technologies to be included in each prototype include a geographical information system, multi-sensor data fusion system, rugged computing devices, and a software defined radio-based communication system for soldiers. Under ‘Make in India’, the government funds 80 per cent of the prototype development cost and the development agencies cover the

Photograph: PIB

real time information simultaneously with the commanders up the chain. It will be a critical element of the Army’s NCW capacity building as part of the Tac C3I. A project like the BMS is a multi-disciplinary process. It is, therefore, imperative that critical issues are addressed at the inception stage. For this, the test-bed must be in full, not truncated as has been the case in testing other operational information systems because of the void of the Tactical Communication System (TCS). A full test-bed would ensure that deficiencies do not crop up later at the fielding stage necessitating upgrades.


ICV BMP-2K tanks

rest. Prototype development is estimated at about $300 million, according to an executive of a domestic company participating in the consortium. Media quotes a senior executive from one of the consortia stating, “The challenge in developing a BMS is not on the hardware. With Indian vendors capable of manufacturing the latest state-of-the-art electronics, hardware will not be a challenge, but the challenge will be in deploying such a system. Considering the size of the Indian Army, an efficient command-andcontrol system is the heart of the system and the biggest stumbling block.”

The development agencies are free to choose overseas partners for technical assistance but the eventual tender will only be awarded to the domestic companies under the ‘Make in India’ category. The BMS prototypes will be developed and tested in the next 40 months; a final order of 600 plus such systems would then be placed for more than $5.8 billion. Once fully developed and proved, the BMS will be able to receive and transmit data, voice and images from multiple sources, including radar, cameras, laser range-finders and ground sensors, allowing the soldier on the battlefield access to

BMS for the Indian Army is an essential force multiplier that has been long overdue. It is good that this is being developed indigenously under ‘Make in India’, like the TCS. The biggest challenge naturally will be deployment on ground suiting every need of the Indian Army in varying terrain and environment conditions. Therefore, developing appropriate system would demand a great amount of flexibility without compromising on speed and security. The requirement no doubt will be colossal considering it will be fielded pan-Army at the battalion/regiment level, but similar system will eventually be required by the paramilitary forces (PMF) and even the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) and state police forces involved in anti-terrorist and counterinsurgency operations if we are to achieve national net-centricity to counter the increasing irregular threats from terrorists, non-state actors and state-sponsored nonstate actors.  SP

India Celebrates Republic Day


he Nation’s military prowess and achievements in different fields, state-of-the-art defence platforms, its diverse cultural and social traditions, and the government’s emphasis on self-reliance and indigenisation were showcased before the public at the historic Rajpath when the country celebrated its 68th Republic Day on January 26, 2017. The parade ceremony commenced at the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate where the Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid homage to the martyrs by laying a wreath. As per

tradition, after unfurling the national flag, the national anthem played with a 21-gun salute. The parade then commenced and the President Pranab Mukherjee took the salute. This year’s chief guest at the parade was Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Armed Forces. The highlights of this year’s parade were a 149-member UAE Presidential Guard, the Air Force, the Navy and Army contingent. For the first time a contingent of the

National Security Guard (NSG), popularly known as the Black Cat Commandoes, marched, past the Rajpath. The parade also saw the fly-past of three LCA Tejas aircraft and the Airborne Early Warning & Control System (AEW&C) developed by DRDO. The Indian Army’s missile firing capability, T-90 ‘Bhishma’ tank, infantry combat vehicle BMP-2K, mobile autonomous launcher of the BrahMos missile system, weapon locating radar ‘Swathi’, Akash weapon system, CBRN reconnnaisance vehicle and Dhanush gun system were the main draw in the mecha-

nised columns. The marching contingents of Army included horse-mounted columns of the 61st Cavalry, the Machanised Infantry Regiment, the Bihar Regiment, the 39 Gorkha Training Centre, 58 Gorkha Training Centre, the Madras Engineering Group and Centre and 103 Infantry Battalion (Territorial Army) Sikh LI. The parade was commanded by Lt General Manoj Mukund Naravane, General Officer Commanding of Delhi Area. Major General Rajesh Sahai, Chief of Staff, Headquarters, Delhi Area, was the parade second-in-command.  SP

Photographs: MoD

From left to right (clockwise): Various contingents marching down Rajpath; contingent of the UAE Armed Forces; T-90 Bhishma tank; Akash launcher systems; and the National Security Guard (NSG) marching contingent debut at the Republic Day parade.


SP’s Land Forces   1/2017

>> News in Brief Sig Sauer to equip US Army with P320 polymer striker-fired pistols

Grade Elite Performance Ammunition features a temperature-stable propellant that is said to deliver consistent muzzle velocity in all-weather conditions.

Saudi Arabia requests $525 million sale of 74K PTDS Aerostats from US

Firearms manufacturer Sig Sauer has been contracted to supply a new modular handgun system (MHS) for the US Army. The army intends to replace its M9 service pistol with the Sig Sauer Model P320 polymer striker-fired pistol. Under the contract, the company will deliver both full-size and compact P320s over the next 10 years. The pistols can be configured with silencers, as well as standard and extended-capacity magazines, the company stated. US Army acquisition executive Steffanie Easter said: “By maximising full and open competition across our industry partners, we truly have optimised the private sector advancements in handguns, ammunition and magazines and the end result will ensure a decidedly superior weapon system for our war-fighters.” The P320 features interchangeable grip modules with adjustable frame sizes and calibres, including 9mm, .357Sig, .40S&W and .45ACP. All pistols will be produced at the Sig Sauer’s facilities in New Hampshire. According to Sig Suer, P320 Full-Size striker-fired pistol features a full-size grip, full length slide, while the P320 Compact features a compact grip and compact slide. Both versions of the pistol are offered with either contrast or SIGLITE Night Sights. Sig Sauer recently expanded its Match Grade Elite Performance Ammunition line for rifles with the addition of 300 Win Mag open-tip-match (OTM) rounds. The Match

The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential $525 million sale of 74K persistent threat detection system (PTDS) aerostats to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Under the sale, Saudi Arabia aims to receive ten 74K PTDS aerostats, as well associated equipment, support and training. The Lockheed Martin-built PTDS is a large heliumfilled system that will provide soldiers with long-range intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and communication assistance. It also provides ground forces with situational awareness against improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and incoming missiles. The sale is in line with the US Government’s commitment to Saudi Arabia’s security and armed forces. As part of the sale, Saudi Arabia requested 14 ground moving target indicator (GMTI) radars, 26 MX-20 electro-optic infrared (EO/IR) cameras, and 10 communications intelligence (COMINT) sensors. The country also asked for mooring systems with embedded fibre-optics, ground control systems (GCS), associated installation hardware, tools and testing equipment, and basic issue items (BII). Additionally, the sale covers programme management and technical support, transportation, spare parts, communications equipment, operators and maintenance manuals and training. The procurement will increase the Royal Saudi Land Force’s interoperability with US forces, as well as Saudi Arabia’s ability to combat current and future threats.

India Evolving as a Global Hub in Defence Manufacturing

19–23 February International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) ADNEC, Abu Dhabi, UAE 13–14 March Future Soldier Technology Holiday Inn Kensington Forum, London, UK 27–29 March Armored Vehicles USA Washington, D.C., USA 4–7 April LAAD (Latin American Defence And Security Exhibition) Riocentro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 9–12 May IDEF’17 (International Defence Industry Fair) Tüyap Fair and Convention Centers, Istanbul, Turkey 18–19 May Homeland Security Expo, India Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, India

Pakistan completes flight test of Ababeel surface-to-surface ballistic missile Pakistan has successfully completed the first flight testing of its surface-to-surface ballistic missile, Ababeel. The test launch validated the various design and technical parameters of the weapon system, according to Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). Development of Ababeel Weapon System is aimed at “ensuring survivability of Pakistan’s ballistic missiles in the growing regional ballistic missile defence (BMD) environment,” ISPR stated. Pakistan Army’s Strategic Forces Command uses the medium-range ballistic missile, which is capable of destroying multiple targets within a maximum range of 2,200 km. The Babur-3 submarine launched cruise missile (SLCM) employs a variety of technologies, including underwater-controlled propulsion and advanced guidance and navigation. This missile employs multiple independent re-entry vehicle (MIRV) technology to deliver multiple nuclear warheads. The latest test follows the test-firing of Pakistan’s SLCM Babur-3 on January 9. During the previous test, Babur-3 was fired from an underwater, mobile platform and hit its target with precise accuracy, the statement said. The missile with a range of 450 km is a sea-based variant of the ground-launched cruise missile (GLCM) Babur-2, which was successfully tested in December 2016. The Babur-3 SLCM employs a variety of technologies, including underwater-controlled propulsion and advanced guidance and navigation. It also features terrain hugging and sea-skimming flight capabilities to evade hostile radars and air defences.

India conducts second test-firing of Pinaka rocket launch system

>> Show Calendar 14–18 February Aero India 2017 Air Force Station Yelahanka, Bengaluru

industries is transforming our country into a global defence manufacturing hub. This synergy has provided the much needed thrust for exporting our defence products globally. We are taking necessary initiatives in this direction and I am sure that our state-of-theart missiles and weapon systems will garner the much needed interest in the global markets and generate foreign exchange.”

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar visited DRDO’s Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Missile Complex during his visit to Hyderabad on January 17, 2017. He visited the integration centre at Research Centre Imarat (RCI) and reviewed the ongoing missile technologies and related programmes. Dr S. Christopher, Secretary, Department of Defence Research and Development and Chairman DRDO, along with Dr G. Satheesh Reddy, Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister and Director General, Missiles and Strategic Systems, briefed the Defence Minister on various technological developments. Parrikar congratulated all DRDO scientists for the recent successful missions including the smart anti-airfield weapon, long-range ballistic missiles Agni-V and Agni-IV, guided Pinaka and Astra. He complimented the Missile Complex for indigenising various technology products and strengthening the defence industrial base in the country. The Defence Minister said, “There is lot of knowledge and infrastructure base with the DRDO and the same needs to be tapped by the MSME and private industries, which in turn will lead towards the establishment of a self-reliant defence industrial ecosystem in our country. Today, the industries are significantly contributing in the realisation of various defence products with the knowhow provided by the DRDO and few of them have even graduated as lead integrators. The partnership between the DRDO and

The Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully test-fired the guided Pinaka rocket for the second time this year, from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur, Odisha. The latest test on January 24, 2017, from launch complex-3 of the ITR follows a similar test-firing conducted on January 12. The guided Pinaka is a modified version of the Pinaka Rocket Mark-II, equipped with a navigation, guidance and control kit, the Indian Ministry of Defence said in a statement. It was co-developed by Armament Research & Development Establishment (ARDE) in Pune, Research Centre Imarat (RCI) in Hyderabad, and Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) in Hyderabad. Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister Dr G. Satheesh Reddy said that the success of guided Pinaka has helped the country to convert unguided systems into weapons of high precision. The rocket’s flight performance was tracked by a range of radars, electro-optical and telemetry systems. The test-firing met all mission objectives, the statement said. The Indian Army uses the Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launch (MBRL) system, which is capable of operating in autonomous, stand-alone, remote and manual modes. Designed to replace the army’s BM-21 Grad multiple rocket launcher systems, Pinaka integrates highenergy propulsion, sub-munition warheads, servo-controlled launcher configuration, and a fire control computer. Each Pinaka rocket is able to carry a 100-kg payload over a range of 40 km.  SP

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SP's Land Forces Issue 1 - 2017  

SP's Land Forces February-March 2017, Aero India 2017 Special, Army Aviation Turns 30 A Reality Check, Exclusive Interview: Ashok Kumar Gupt...

SP's Land Forces Issue 1 - 2017  

SP's Land Forces February-March 2017, Aero India 2017 Special, Army Aviation Turns 30 A Reality Check, Exclusive Interview: Ashok Kumar Gupt...