The Indian Army has to wait a bit longer for getting 93,895 close-quarter-battle carbines (CQB) a deal which is worth $ 553.33 million. The deal which has been put on Fast Track Procurement (FTP) process is awaiting approval from the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), which is now likely to meet in August.
“The decision on the procurement from the UAE based Company was expected to be taken at the DAC meeting which took place in July. However, it did not make it to agenda for that meeting. Also, the Chief of Defence Services Gen Bipin Rawat wanted to know more about the urgency for procuring CQB. A top Infantry officer has made a presentation to the CDS last week on the urgent requirement of the CQBs and its importance for troops deployed in the Valley,” top sources confirmed to Financial Express Online.
With the border tensions along the Line of Actual Control between India and China and the constant terrorist attacks from Pakistan side, has made the Indian Army ensure that the procurement of CQBs for the troops is expedited. The Indian Army was looking for the CQBs to modernize its infantry arm. So far the UAE based company has not received the contract. Though there is no requirement for a DAC approval as it is coming through FTP route, the UAE company is stuck in procedural requirements.
European Company Thales with Indian company Bharat Forge has written to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) that they are willing to supply the CQBs at the price being offered by the UAE based company Caracal.
The Story So Far
As has been reported by Financial Express Online earlier, it has been more than 16 months since the UAE based Caracal Company after extensive trials was declared L1 for$ 553.33 million procurement.
An Oversight Committee which was tasked to submit its report on the issues raised by other companies who failed during trials, has done so.
The UAE based Caracal which was declared L1 has already and has been through the already been through the Commercial Negotiating Committee (CNC), and has completed the Acceptance Test Procedure report, and has submitted the documents required under the RfP.
While the company claims to be NATO compliant, the trials for the Indian requirement were extensively and carried out not only here in the country but outside as well in different terrains with Indian ammunition.
The deal has to happen through the FTP route which means that from the time the order is placed within one year the deliveries need to start.
Who all bid for this order?
The companies who failed to make the cut after extensive trials registered their complaints with the MoD against the UAE based company which was declared L1. To address these concerns raised by the South Korean Company S&T Motiv, and European Company Thales, a nine-member committee headed by an Indian Army Brigadier was set up.
Since the deal expected to be inked with the UAE Company is for 93,895 CQBs, concerns were also raised by others about its ability to supply within one year.