Indian Army Soldiers are soon to get new night vision devices which will be a big boost for the Armed Forces. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh who is heading the Defence Acquisition Council is soon to consider acquisition of the devices later this month.
An order of approximately 21,000 Night Vision Devices for assault rifles is on the table. Overall cost for the same is Rs 1600 crores.
Night vision devices are extremely important for infantry fighting insurgents at night. Soldiers have faced major attacks in the early hours of the morning on various occasions, including BAT attacks on posts on the LoC by groups comprising terrorists and Pakistan Army commandos.
The Indian Army uses a variety of assault rifles including the Russian Kalashnikov family and the Night Vision Devices set to be acquired can be mounted on all the rifles.
India is also in the process of manufacturing close to a million AK-203 assault rifles locally for not just the Army, but other forces as well in the coming years. Apart from Russian Rifles that form the bulk of the rifle stock, the Indian Army also uses the Israeli Tavor and the American M4 for its Special Forces in small quantities.
The Defence Acquisition Council is currently looking at several big-ticket defence acquisitions like 111 naval multi-utility helicopters, 10 additional P-8I Poseidon Anti-Submarine aircraft and around 14 twin engine heavy choppers for the Indian Coast Guard. The overall cost of acquiring these weapon systems is close to Rs 50,000 crore which is approximately US $ 7-bn.
Issues including local manufacturing in India through 'strategic partnership' is also been looked into.
Another important weapons acquisition for the Armed Forces are the self-propelled Air Defence Gun System. Plans to acquire five regiments of the Self-Propelled Air Defence Gun Missile System will have to wait a little longer.
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Article written exclusively for www.DefenceNews.in