Defence Ministry on foreign shopping spree; eyes assault rifles, body armour, helmets for soldiers: Report
Bloomberg reported that the ministry may be purchasing 185,000 modern assault rifles from global markets.
New Delhi: The Defence Ministry is reportedly planning to buy modern assault rifles, body armour as well as helmets for soldiers from foreign shores.
Bloomberg reported that the ministry may be purchasing 185,000 assault rifles from global markets.
The ministry also plans to buy hundreds of thousands of helmets and tens of thousands of modern bullet proof vests, the report said.
The move is part of PM Modi's $250 billion push to modernize the armed forces, it said.
The hunt for arms in the global markets began after the ministry reportedly received complaints regarding unreliability of the current weapons. The army currently uses INSAS rifles built by state-owned Ordnance Factory.
According to the report, the ministry's choice is 7.62mm model which will "shoot to kill" and a request has already been made in this regard last month.
The report said India will issue a tender to procure the rifles in April 2017.
“India needs 65,000 rifles within 28 months of signing the contract and has asked global manufacturers to reply by November 7,” it said citing the ministry.
This is reportedly India's second attempt since 2011 to procure assault rifles.
However the 2011 tenders were cancelled in 2015 after the rifles offered by the global manufacturers did not meet the requirements, the report added.