HomeIndian DefenceIn a surprising move, Indian Army Western Command’s Panther Division trains its...

In a surprising move, Indian Army Western Command’s Panther Division trains its troops with vintage Soviet Era T-55 Tanks

Source : IgMp News Bulletin

In a surprising move, Indian Army Western Command’s Panther Division trains its troops with vintage Soviet Era T-55 Tanks
Image Source : Western Command – Indian Army/X @westerncomd_IA

Recently, troops from the Panther Division, operating under the Western Command of the Indian Army, engaged in comprehensive combat training, simulating real operational scenarios. This exercise aimed at fostering professionalism and ensuring the troops’ readiness for any situation. What caught attention online was the involvement of T-55 main battle tanks (MBTs) in the drills, a rare occurrence in Indian Army exercises since 2011.

The T-55 MBT, a stalwart from the Soviet era, had served the Indian Army with nearly 700 units since its induction in 1965. By 2011, these tanks had shifted from being the second line of defense, stationed behind T-72s, to the third line with the advent of more modern T-90 MBTs in the early 2000s. Consequently, the T-55s began a phased retirement after faithfully serving for four decades.

In an intriguing development in 2017, some of the older T-55s found a new purpose as fortified bunkers along the Line of Control (LoC). These repurposed tanks, essentially serving as pillboxes, utilized their 105mm main guns as mobile artillery pieces.

The Panther Division’s recent training exercise, incorporating T-55s, suggests the potential ongoing utilization of these retired tanks in specific scenarios, likely for specialized roles or training objectives.

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