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Make in India : Defence Ministry to acquire 6.5 lakh assault rifles for Indian Army

The Ministry of Defence has approved the acquisition of 6.5 lakh assault rifles, under “Make in India” program. The Ministry of Defence issued a Request for Information (RFI) and the whole process will be under the ‘Buy and Make (Indian)’ with ‘Buy’ component being kept nil. The Army is planning to replace around 8 lakh Insas Rifles produced by the Ordinance Factory Board. These rifles will become the frontline personal weapon system of the important infantry soldier of the Indian Army, ANI reported.

The Indian Army has around 400 units of infantry serving in the most difficult parts which also included the significant part of the unit strengths of the Rashtriya Rifles units entrusted with the counter-terrorism operations in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.

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In order to fulfil the immediate needs of Assault Rifles, 72,400 units will be procured through the Fast Track Procedure from the international market. The Army had sent a nine-member delegation, led by a Brigadier, to five other countries in order to select the best available options in those countries. As per reports, the delegation is back and it is expected to start the process of fast-track procurement soon.

This move can be seen as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push to modernise India’s armed forces. The Request for Proposal for the larger procurement is expected to take place by December this year.


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