Custom Search Engine - Scans Selected News Sites

Loading

Thursday, 27 November 2014

From Today's Papers - 27 Nov 2014


















http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141127/edit.htm#4
Action at Defence Ministry at last
Bigger challenges need to be faced
Inder Malhotra
FOR over a quarter of a century the Indian Army has desperately needed artillery guns. But no matter how hard it tried it couldn't get them. One reason for this, of course, was the aftermath of the Bofors scandal, which became the standard excuse of all concerned not to take any decision at all. There was an element of disingenuousness in this posturing. For, despite the commissions worth Rs 64 crore distributed to the still unnamed beneficiaries, the Swedish gun served this country superbly during the Kargil war. Ironically, it was at the peak of this fight that the Army discovered to its dismay that it was running out of ammunition because of the obsession of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to blacklist all suppliers it suspected or disliked. Ultimately, we had to buy the ammunition from South Africa at thrice the normal price. Even this made no difference to the civilian bureaucracy in the MoD and its political bosses. Indecision remained the ruling doctrine of both. Sadly, A. K. Antony, a very fine man with an enviable reputation for personal probity, who has been the longest-serving Defence Minister so far, became the biggest hurdle to decision-making. By doing nothing he was sure of retaining his image as "St. Antony".

Against this bleak backdrop it is greatly to be welcomed that within a few days after his appointment as Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has ended the paralysis over the procurement of artillery guns by clearing the decks for acquiring 814 long-range mounted artillery guns to fill a serious gap in its equipment and, therefore, in its overall capability. The cost will be Rs 15,570 crore. The deal was approved after a serious consideration at a Defence Acquisition Council meeting that Mr Parrikar presided over for the first time. He also said that the DAC should meet oftener than it has done so far even if its agenda is rather short. My first thought on hearing this was that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should have handed over the Defence Ministry to the former Goa Chief Minister while forming his Cabinet on May 26. Mr Parrikar has laid down that that the acquisition of artillery guns — like all future procurements — will take place within the framework of the Prime Minister’s “Make-in-India” concept.

While the Army will buy 100 guns off the shelf of the foreign vendor, the remaining 714 will be manufactured here. Global tenders will be floated soon, and the Indian manufacturer will have to "tie up" with the selected foreign vendor for building the gun. Several Indian companies such as the Tatas, Larsen & Toubro and Kalyani, as well as the public sector Ordnance Factory Board have already produced prototypes of 155mm, 52 calibre guns. They are all likely to take part in the bid.

So far, so good. But the real point is that the defenders of the country's freedom and frontiers will be greatly handicapped in discharging their duty until the makers of policy on national security attend to the fundamental task of reforming the higher management of the defence system. Civilian control over the military is, of course, the basic principle in every democracy. Indeed, even in China the doctrine of the “Party controlling the Gun” has prevailed since the time of Mao Zedong. The present Chinese President, Xi Jinping, has reinforced it. But in a democracy like India the civilian supremacy does not, and must not, mean the supremacy of civil servants. It is long overdue that the Indian armed forces — absolutely apolitical, unlike the armies of some of our neighbours — should be liberated from the stranglehold of the generalist babus of the MoD. In recent years when a service chief informally and politely told the then Prime Minister that he and his two opposite numbers regretted that they were not asked to be present at a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), the reply he got was: “Well, you were represented by the Defence secretary”! This pattern has to end.

One thing that the Modi government does not need to do is to appoint a commission or committee to suggest what to do. There is a heap of sensible reports on the subject that are gathering dust. The report of the Kargil Committee — headed by this country's strategic guru K. Subrhamanyam — had, among other things, made a strong case of having a Chief of Defence Staff. The Atal Behari Vajpayee government took it seriously. A Group of Ministers, chaired by L. K. Advani, endorsed the suggestion. At the last minute, while accepting all the GoM's recommendations, Atalji held over the one on the CDS. He made no secret of the fact that he had consulted former President R. Venkataraman and former Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao, both of whom had been defence ministers in Congress governments.

Seven years later, the Manmohan Singh government appointed the Naresh Chandra Task Force on revamping the entire external and internal security setup. Realising that there still was much resistance to having a CDS, it suggested a step in the right direction: the appointment of a permanent Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee with a fixed tenure of two years. This was a vast improvement over the existing arrangement under which the most senior of the three chiefs acts as chairman of the CSC also until his retirement. He neither has enough time for inter-Services matters because he has to run his own service too, nor a long enough tenure. In one case it lasted precisely 30 days. The permanent chief, according to the Task Force, would not interfere with the operational matters but handle all inter-Service issues, including determination of priority in the matter of acquisition of weapons and equipment. Most importantly, the permanent chairman would be able to supervise the Strategic Command more effectively than has been happening since 1998. Over to Mr. Parrikar.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141127/nation.htm#18
 IAF’s first transport squadron turns 70
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 26
From airlifting the first Indian troops to Srinagar in 1947 for defending the Valley against the onslaught of Pakistani raiders to specialising in employing modified transport aircraft for bombing missions, it has been an eventful flight for the IAF’s first transport outfit, No.12 Squadron, as it turns 70 this week.

Raised initially on Spitfire fighters in 1945 at Kohat (Pakistan), the squadron was re-equipped with Dakota transport aircraft in September 1946, opening a new chapter in the then Royal Indian Air Force’s history. Just two days before Partition, the squadron moved from Chaklala, now in Pakistan, to Agra.

The following months saw the unit, being the only transport squadron, carrying out daring and intense flying to battle zones in Srinagar, Poonch and Ladakh, maintaining the vital air bridge, bringing in supplies, evacuating people and ferrying VIPs. Also known as “Yaks”, the squadron later switched over to the US made C-119 Packet aircraft and then on to the Russian AN-32 during the late 1980s.

“The squadron was heavily committed for Operation Meghdoot in Siachen as well as Operation Pawan in Sri Lanka, tasked for airlifting the spearhead elements during the launch phases as well as logistically sustaining the forces later,” Wg Cdr CS Grewal (retd), who has served three tenures with Yaks, said. “Earlier, during the 1971 Indo-Pak war, our Packet aircraft were part of the para-drop over Tangail in the eastern sector,” he said.

Presently based at Agra with Gp Capt Amit Pushkar as its Commanding Officer and Ari Marshal GP Singh as its Commodore Commandant, the squadron’s current roles include specific bombing missions, routine transport and communication duties as well as disaster relief operations.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141127/nation.htm#19
 BSF goes hi-tech to check infiltration
Shaurya Karanbir Gurung
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 26
The Border Security Force is using Underground Sensors (UGS), a "laser wall" and "smart fencing", a system comprising modern surveillance equipment, along the unfenced areas of the India-Pakistan border to check infiltration.

The developments came to light on the sidelines of the BSF's annual press conference held on the force's 50th anniversary. The BSF was constituted on December 1, 1965, and the force claims that they are currently the world's largest border guarding force.

"Smart fencing" has been developed by the BSF's Research and Development (R&D) team, while the UGS and the "laser wall" have been procured. About 85 per cent of the India-Pakistan border is fenced, while about 70 to 80 kilometre along the border in Gujarat remains unfenced, according to the BSF.

"Fencing is not in some areas, because of the non-acquisition of the land for it,” said BSF Director General DK Pathak.

He said there had been no infiltration by militants along the International Boundary (IB) in Jammu for three years.

The UGS is placed two to three feet below the ground. "When a person steps over it, the UGS sends an alarm to the screen of the system at the control centre. The person who is watching the screen sends someone to examine what has caused the alarm to go off," said a BSF source.

"Smart fencing" consists of three surveillance equipment - the LORROS, Battle Field Surveillance Radar and Hand Held Thermal Imagers. "The company commander sitting at his office can examine if anyone is approaching the zero line (the International Boundary) and has crossed it. It has been installed along a four kilometre stretch along the IB in Punjab and an equally long stretch in Jammu," said Pathak, adding that "laser wall" was being used along the IB in Jammu. "If anyone passes through the wall, it sounds an alarm," he said.

The new gadgets

    Underground Sensors are placed two to three feet below the ground. "When a person steps over it, the UGS sends an alarm to the screen of the system at the control centre," said a BSF source
    Smart fencing consists of three surveillance equipment. "The company commander sitting at his office can examine if anyone is approaching the zero line (the International Boundary) and has crossed it," said BSF Director General DK Pathak
    Laser wall is being used along the IB in Jammu. "If anyone passes through the wall, it sounds an alarm," Pathak said



http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141127/nation.htm#22
 UAV crashes in Bhuj, probe ordered
Manas Dasgupta

Ahmedabad, November 26
An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) of the Indian Air Force used for surveillance, presumably on the international border, crashed on the outskirts of Bhuj town, the district headquarters of Kutch in Gujarat today.

A Defence department spokesman while confirming the mishap said the unmanned remote-controlled vehicle, Heron, crashed near Mankuva village, 40 km from Bhuj. He said the exact reason behind the crash could not be ascertained and it would be known only after the court of inquiry ordered into the crash presents its findings. Kutch District Superintendent of Police DN Patel said no casualties on the ground were reported in the crash.

The UAV was acquired by India from Israel at a cost of Rs 80 crore. Heron is a medium-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle developed by Malat division of Israel Aerospace Industry and is capable of long endurance operations.


http://www.ndtv.com/article/cities/air-force-unmanned-aerial-vehicle-cost-80-crore-crashes-in-gujarat-626201?utm_source=ndtv&utm_medium=top-stories-widget&utm_campaign=story-9-http%3a%2f%2fwww.ndtv.com%2farticle%2fcities%2fair-force-unmanned-aerial-vehicle-cost-80-crore-crashes-in-gujarat-626201
Air Force Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, Cost 80 Crore, Crashes in Gujarat
Bhuj, Gujarat:  A Heron Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) of the Indian Air Force, used for surveillance, crashed today on the outskirts of a village near Bhuj town in Gujarat's Kutch district.

"IAF's Heron UAV which was used for surveillance in the area, crashed near Mankunva village, about 40 kilometres from Bhuj town in Kutch," Defence PRO at Ahmedabad, Wing Commander Abhishek Matiman told PTI.

The cost of the Heron UAV is approximately Rs. 80 crores, the official said.

"The reason behind the crash will be known after a court of inquiry gives its findings. As the UAV was remote-controlled and there was no person in it, the exact reasons behind the crash are not yet known," he said.

According to Bhuj Superintendent of Police D N Patel, there was no casualty reported due to the crash in Mankunva village near Bhuj town.

Heron is a medium-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle developed by Malat division of Israel Aerospace industry. It is capable of medium altitude long endurance operations of up to 52 hours' duration.

It was acquired by India from Israel.


http://www.bignewsnetwork.com/index.php/sid/227958347
BEL delivers upgraded air defence system to army
State-run Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) Tuesday delivered the first upgraded Schilka air defence weapon system to the Indian army, three years after it signed the contract following evaluation of the prototype system in March 2011.

"Schilka is an all-weather, self-propelled, tracked, low-level air defence weapon system and its upgraded version has search-cum-track digital radar, with electro-optical fire control system," the company said in a statement.

Army's Director General, Air Defence, Lt.Gen. V.K. Saxena received the first Schilka from BEL chairman and managing director S.K. Sharma at a function here.

"The army has given clearance for bulk production of the enhanced weapon system, whose main engine, auxiliary engine, integrated fire detection, suppression system, nuclear, biological and chemical filter and communication system have also been upgraded," the company said but did not specify the number of the weapon system to be rolled out.

An air-conditioner has also been provided in the Schilka cabin for the comfort of its crew.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

From Today's Papers - 26 Nov 2014


















http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141126/nation.htm#11
 Sindhuratna fire: 7 Navy officers guilty
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 25
The Indian Navy has found seven officers culpable of various acts of omissions and commissions that led to the mid-sea fire on board submarine INS Sindhuratna. Two officers had died in the accident on February 26 and the then Navy Chief Admiral DK Joshi had quit owning moral responsibility.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar told Parliament in his written reply in the Rajya Sabha: “The investigation reports related to the accidents have been submitted to Naval Headquarters. The Board of Inquiry (BOI) report in case of INS Sindhuratna has found seven officers culpable of various acts of omissions and commissions.”

Disciplinary action against these officers has been initiated at the Western Naval Command headquarters, the Defence Minister said. Sources said Commodore-rank — equal to Brigadier of the Indian Army — is among those seven facing action. All of these officers need not be posted on the vessel but were in one way or the other involved in its re-fit and maintenance.

The accident had occurred mid-sea off Mumbai coast. On the other submarine accident, the INS Sindhurakshak, which exploded at the Mumbai navy docks on August 14, 2013, the Defence Minister said the BOI has been completed.

Eighteen crewmen on board had died in the accident. Parrikar said a Board of Inquiry report into that tragedy has also been submitted, but its examination was yet to be completed.

Sources said the cause of the accident was still being ascertained since it took almost 10 months to salvage the sunken vessel.

Action initiated

    Two officers had died when a fire broke out mid-sea on board INS Sindhuratna on February 26
    The then Navy Chief, Admiral DK Joshi, had quit owning moral responsibility
    The Board of Inquiry has held seven officers culpable and disciplinary action has been initiated at the Western Naval Command headquarters



http://www.tribuneindia.com/2014/20141126/nation.htm#17
 Su-30MKI gets flying again during Indo-Russian exercise
Tribune News Service

Halwara, November 25
As part of the phase-II of the Indo-Russian bilateral exercise, Avia Indra I, Russian air force team participated in the ‘air-to-ground’ firing by aircraft and helicopters of the IAF at Sidhwan Khas Range near Halwara today.

During the exercise, Su-30MKI, the fighter aircraft, was flown for the first time after being grounded following its crash in October. The operations of the aircraft had been suspended since October because of crashes due to technical snag of sudden activation of seat ejection.

Air Commodore PK Vohra said “Su-30MKIs have been flying for the past one week and are part of the operations here”. An 18-member Russian team has been participating in the bilateral exercise at the Halwara Air Force Station since November 17. The Russian delegation, headed by Major General Lyapkin Alexander N, consists of fighter and helicopter aircrew among other members. The Russian crew has flown IAF Su-30MKI, Mi-35 and Mi-17 along with their Indian counterpart. Earlier, members of the Russian delegation visited Bengaluru, where they were exposed to indigenous projects such as Light Combat Aircraft (Tejas), Light Combat Helicopter and Advance Light Helicopter (Dhruv).

The joint exercise will further strengthen the relations between the two Air Forces taking forward the Indo-Russian strategic partnership. The Russian team will be in India till November 28.


http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report-india-paid-over-rs-one-lakh-crore-for-defence-acquisition-in-last-five-years-manohar-parrikar-2038420
India paid over Rs one lakh crore for defence acquisition in last five years: Manohar Parrikar
India has directly paid over Rs one lakh crore to foreign firms for acquisition of equipment for the armed forces during the last five years, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Tuesday.

The government, he said, constantly reviews the security scenario and accordingly decides to induct appropriate defence equipment. This is a continuous process undertaken through procurement from various indigenous as well as foreign vendors to keep the armed forces in a state of readiness, he said, adding that procurement from indigenous vendors accounts for a significant share in capital acquisition.

"The total expenditure on direct payments to foreign vendors for capital acquisitions for the army, navy and air force during the last five years was Rs 103535.52 crore," he said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha. Parrikar said that defence production policy focuses on greater self-reliance in defence production. "Government has also raised the FDI limit in defence production from 26% to 49% and liberalised the licensing regime," he said.
The Defence Procurement Procedure 2013 lays emphasis on providing the desired boost to indigenous defence industry by mandating a higher preference to the 'Buy (Indian)', 'Buy & Make (Indian)' and 'Make' categorisation in capital procurement, the Minister said.

In a separate reply, Parrikar said acquisition of weapons and equipment for defence forces during the last 14 years was carried out as per the defence procurement procedure (DPP), as revised from time to time and as per long term integrated perspective plan (LTIPP), services capital acquisition plan and annual acquisition plan. Capital procurements for defence are currently being progressed as per the current LTIPP (2012-27), he said.


http://www.news.lk/news/business/item/4623-curtains-come-down-on-joint-military-exercise-mithra-shakthi-between-special-forces-of-indian-army-sri-lanka-army
Curtains Come Down on Joint Military Exercise ‘Mithra Shakthi’ Between Special Forces of Indian Army & Sri Lanka Army


Elevating existing relations to new heights and marking the start of a new era of neighbourly understanding and close cooperation between both organizations, the contingent of 42 Indian Army Special Force troops (5 officers and 37 other ranks), successfully, completed the training ‘Exercise - Mithra Shakthi’ on Sunday (23), together with a corresponding Sri Lankan contingent of 300 Special Forces and Commandos, and a few Navy and Air Force personnel after formal briefings and a closing ceremony at Magampura International Convention Centre.

The ‘Exercise - Mithra Shakthi’, an initiative, designed largely by the Indian Army was the successful outcome of the ‘Annual Defence Dialogue’ (ADD) that was co-chaired in Colombo early October by both Mr R.K Mathur, Indian Defence Secretary and Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary to Ministry of Defence and Urban Development.

 Sunday's concluding ceremony saw both Major General Mano Perera, Commander, Security Force Headquarters-Central and the Head of the Indian contingent, Brigadier General G. Sudhakar, Deputy Director General Military Operation exchange goodwill plaques and warm greetings after all participants were awarded special certificates.

 Both Sri Lankan and Indian Military leaders addressed the gathering and evaluated the Exercise in retrospect, elaborating on the outcome and experience of both sides as is the practice in such de-briefing. Several invitees, including the Defence Adviser in the High Commission of India, Director Operations and acting Director Training at Army Headquarters, were present at Magampura, Hambantota for the ceremony on Sunday (23).

The Exercise, meant purely to share knowledge and experience between Special Operation Forces of both Sri Lanka and Indian Armies through enhancement of interoperability, joint efforts and mutual exchange of Special Operation tactics, saw its implementation on the directions of the Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Daya Ratnayake during three weeks.

168 officers and other ranks from Sri Lanka Army Special Forces and Commando Regiment, accompanied by 16 officers and other ranks from Sri Lanka Navy and 16 officers and other ranks from Sri Lanka Air Force, together with all 42 Indian Army Special Force troops, participated in the Exercise.

The modalities for the three-week long Exercise have been closely coordinated through the Directorate of Army Training at the Army Headquarters in consultation with the corresponding authorities.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to this effect, was signed between Captain Prakash Gopalan, Defence Adviser, High Commission of India and Brigadier Jayantha Guneratne, Director Training, Sri Lanka Army on Thursday (30) at the Army Headquarters in the presence of Major General Sumedha Perera, Director General General Staff, representing the Commander of the Army.

In the aftermath of the ADD, held in January 2012, a Sri Lankan contingent of 48 service personnel, took part in a similar Exercise in New Delhi, India at the invitation of the Indian Army. (SL Army)



http://www.firstpost.com/india/twin-threats-of-china-and-pakistan-decoding-pm-modis-13-billion-defence-push-1774453.html
Twin threats of China and Pakistan: Decoding PM Modi’s $13 billion defence push
The Narendra Modi government has cleared new defence projects worth Rs 80,000 crore (a little over $13 billion). Who are these new defence projects aimed at?

The obvious answer is China and Pakistan. But will China risk another war with India, non-winnable this time, at a time it has greater strategic sweepstakes elsewhere like the South China Sea? Probably yes, and probably not!
“Probably yes” -- because China is the most potent threat to India and the Indians are nowhere at par with the Chinese in terms of military capabilities. If China has to wage a winnable war against India, the option for the Chinese is fast closing. Though in today’s scenario, a full-scale war is unthinkable, and that too between two nuclear armed powers, if China has any ambitions of seizing Indian territory through military means, it will have to move fast. The longer China waits, the lesser will be its chances of winning a war because of the counter military measures being taken by India, slowly but comprehensively.

“Probably not” – because China does not have to really a fight a war with India if it can extend its military umbrella to Pakistan and see the fireworks in the Indo-Pak battlefield without putting its own military boots on the ground. In other words, China can “manage” India by encouraging a situation where the familiar South Asian enemies get into a war, or a near-war, situation.

The Indian government has been well aware of this twin threat for decades and has been trying its best to get a shade better of this pincer military situation.

This is the perspective from which one must view the Modi government’s push to modernize its defence capabilities and preparedness. The Modi government’s decisions are aimed at beefing up the Indian navy and army in a big way, with a deep focus on bolstering the Indian Navy, particularly in the field of submarines.

The newly-cleared Indian defence projects are aimed at plugging the gaping loopholes in the submarine sector. These include acquisition of six conventional submarines for augmenting the aging and depleted submarine fleet and two midget submarines, used for special operations. The Indian focus is on “Make in India,” PM Modi’s pet scheme, and indigenization and self-reliance.

This is a major give-away of Indian tactics. Indian Navy gave a stellar performance in the 1971 War with Pakistan and proved to be a game-changer by blockading and throttling Pakistan’s main commercial artery – Karachi. The Indian Navy (IN) did not have to do much military combat and its mere presence around the enemy’s throat did the wonders.

Though the IN is presently not in a very healthy state, particularly because of its vastly depleted submarine strength, even in its current situation it is more than a match for Pakistan Navy.

Therefore, the IN is being bolstered with an eye on the bigger enemy China, rather than Pakistan.

If India continues with its defence push over the next decade or so, it is sure that China won’t be in a position to even think of embarking on another 1962-type military misadventure. Even now the Indian armed forces are no push over for the Chinese but by 2025, India’s defence capabilities would be several notches higher.

It is in this context that the new defence projects cleared by the Modi government on 25 October assume significance.

The Modi government’s next logical step should be to ensure that the China-specific mountain strike corps is made fully operational at the earliest.

In other words, if no India-China war takes place by 2025 the chances are that such a war will never take place as the Indians would have covered a lot of ground vis a vis the Chinese by then.

If India has to be most careful and vigilant about the China threat, it is now. Therefore, all new Indian defence projects must have minimum gestation period and the weapons promised in such projects must be delivered to the Indian armed forces in the shortest possible time span.

Last year on 8 July the state-owned Chinese daily Wenweipo had published an article with a sensational title “Six Wars China is Sure to Fight in the Next 50 Years”. According to this widely talked about article, China’s third war would be against India over Arunachal Pradesh (“Southern Tibet” for the Chinese) which will be fought sometime between 2035-40.

But that seems to be a midsummer night dream of the author as India would be completely at par with China, if not ahead, at that time.

It is now, not a decade or two later, that India has to fear China. The Modi government’s decisions on new $13 billion new defence projects must be welcomed in this context.


http://www.daijiworld.com/news/news_disp.asp?n_id=279392
BEL delivers upgraded air defence system to army

Bengaluru, Nov 25 (IANS): State-run Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) Tuesday delivered the first upgraded Schilka air defence weapon system to the Indian army, three years after it signed the contract following evaluation of the prototype system in March 2011.

"Schilka is an all-weather, self-propelled, tracked, low-level air defence weapon system and its upgraded version has search-cum-track digital radar, with electro-optical fire control system," the company said in a statement.

Army's Director General, Air Defence, Lt.Gen. V.K. Saxena received the first Schilka from BEL chairman and managing director S.K. Sharma at a function here.

"The army has given clearance for bulk production of the enhanced weapon system, whose main engine, auxiliary engine, integrated fire detection, suppression system, nuclear, biological and chemical filter and communication system have also been upgraded," the company said but did not specify the number of the weapon system to be rolled out.

An air-conditioner has also been provided in the Schilka cabin for the comfort of its crew.


http://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2014/11/25/Poor-Ammo-at-Air-Defence-units/article2539620.ece
Poor Ammo at Air Defence units


NEW DELHI: The accident at the Army Air Defence College in Gopalpur on Sunday has put a question mark over the quality of ammunition and obsolete weaponry used by the air defence units.

Three officers and a gunner instructor had suffered serious injuries while ammunition was being loaded in an air defence gun. One of the officers, involved in the accident, was an Army officer from Myanmar, who was undergoing training at the centre in Odisha.

Though the Army has ordered a Court of Inquiry to establish the cause of the accident, initial reports indicated the poor quality of ammunition.  “The ammunition exploded while it was being loaded into the gun chamber. It appears that the safety mechanism designed to protect the ammunition  before its launch from the gun had failed,” said a source.

Meanwhile, the Army has segregated the particular lot of its ammunition and has ordered that should it not be used till probe ends. Army ammunition is made by the Ordnance Factory Board.

Sources further revealed that Sunday’s accident was not the first of its kind. On several previous occasions it had been reported that the ammunition had gone off prematurely. Last year, in a similar accident, a jawan died while loading the ammunition in an air defence gun in Mahajan field firing range in Bikaner.

 

Mail your comments, suggestions and ideas to me

Template created by Rohit Agarwal