Parliamentary panel slams govt for ammunition shortage
Gen V K Singh pointed out critical shortage of tank ammunition in a
letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [ Images ], a parliamentary
panel on Monday pulled up the government saying it was alarmed over
the way deficiencies were allowed to continue leading to such a
report tabled on Monday, the Standing Committee on defence said the
army representatives have also revealed that problems of shortage of
tank ammunition surfaced after the blacklisting of Israeli firm IMI,
which was recently barred from doing any business in Indian defence
committee (members) are alarmed over the way deficiencies have been
allowed to persist leading to criticality in ammunition in the
country," the report said.
panel asked the government to ensure that all confronting issues
regarding acquisitions should be addressed immediately and desired
allocations for procurements should be made available to the army.
All the issues confronting delay in procurement should be dealt to
put the procurement procedures on fast track mode. The issue of
critical gaps should be addressed without any further delay and also
within the stipulated time-frame," it said.
committee pointed out that other areas affecting the preparedness of
the Army were its requirements for artillery guns and aerial assets
for the Army Aviation Corps. "The committee disapproves the way
deficiency of gun
has been allowed to reach criticality. While deploring the
situation, the committee recommend that at least now the desired
initiatives should be taken by the defence ministry and the
government," the report stated.
army chief had written a letter to the PM highlighting the shortage
of ammunition for tanks and 97 per cent obsolescence in air defence
committee said it fails to understand how the army would be able to
address the issue of critical shortages or armaments. It said the
defence ministry and the army have informed it that after the
contract for ammunition with the IMI Limited fell through,
alternative ways of procuring them are being looked at.
report said Army Vice Chief Lt Gen S K Singh had informed it that
"it was for another ammunition AMK 339. Because we could not get
through this route for this 3,39, 16,000 rounds have been
immediately imported and they have been made available to us."
can fire a different type of ammunition if that AFCC (a type of
ammunition) is not there. 66,000 rounds are at the CNC (contract
negotiations) stage. Actions have been taken to make up what we
could not get through the DRDO route simultaneously," theaArmy vice
chief had informed the panel.
committee was informed that "total tank ammunition is 67 per cent.
In overall, it is about 40 per cent, which has been the holding. In
other cases like Infantry ammunition we are all right, that is about
70 per cent. In artillery, the problem is with one item that is the
shortage of aerial assets in the army, the committee said, "There
are huge gaps between the sanctioned and existing machines with the
The report said if the sanctioned and existing strength in the
aerial arm of the army is compared, "There is shortage of 18
Cheetah, 1 Chetak, 76 ALH Dhruv and 60 ALH (Weapon Systems
Integrated) with army aviation."