HomeGlobal Defence UpdatesIndia: Drawing lessons from Russia-Ukraine conflict, India rebalances artillery plan

India: Drawing lessons from Russia-Ukraine conflict, India rebalances artillery plan

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Drawing from the lessons of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, India is rebalancing its artillery modernisation plan to focus on higher mobility, self-preservation of guns and rocket systems, and attaining stronger precision strike capabilities, sources in the defence establishment said.

The army is testing a range of new ammunition that will increase the range of indigenous multiple barrel rocket launchers (MBRL) and make them more accurate as well.

Another lesson drawn from the Russia-Ukraine conflict is the need to have ammunition for extended wars, as well as a surge capability to shore up domestic production when needed, people cited above said.

In the past, the army relied heavily on towed gun systems but is now in the process of acquiring self-propelled artillery that have shoot and scoot capabilities, increasing their chance of survival from enemy fire.

The process to acquire truck-mounted artillery guns is already underway.

“In the revised artillery profile, there has been an increase in self-propelled and mobile systems,” one of the sources said. The army is conducting tests for modified K9 Vajra self-propelled artillery systems.A case for procuring 100 additional K9 Vajras is already underway and sources said this number could go up higher in the future as the need arises. K9 Vajra is the Indian version of South Korean Hanwha Defense’s K9 Thunder. It is built by Larsen & Toubro. The army is already in the process of negotiations to acquire the indigenous Advanced Towed Artillery Gun (ATAG) system, with the order to be split between Bharat Forge and Tata Defence.

It is also looking at a new, more advanced towed gun system from the Indian industry.

The indigenous Dhanush is being inducted with one regiment of these howitzers already raised by the army. Five additional regiments of the guns are promised to be delivered by 2026, people cited above said.

There had been hiccups in delivery of the gun contracted to the erstwhile Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) due to delays in delivery of imported parts, but sources said the issues have been sorted out.

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