Indian Army is expected to start setting up light howitzers in eastern areas

Indian Army is expected to start setting up light howitzers in eastern areas
Indian Army is expected to start setting up light howitzers in eastern areas

The Indian Army has planned mobility will allow fast insertion of the howitzers in the closed location of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China. It allows moving troops, equipment and weapons quickly due to the better infrastructure.

The officers of the Army told to HT, “In eastern Arunachal Pradesh, the Army of India is getting ready to deploy the new M777 ultra-light howitzers to achieve the right artillery fire assistance in the hilly areas that could be expected to remains a “game-changer” in case of some war.”

The howitzers of 155 mm/39-caliber can ideally sling-loaded to helicopters. It can easily move to the area of high-altitude and expected to be installed by the year-end. In November 2016, India invested $750 million and places an order for 145 howitzers from the US.

According to the Army officer, “The M777s surely remains a game-changer in the eastern area of India. The well transferable guns can be quickly positioned and repositioned for missions of the Boeing CH-47F (I) Chinook planes. The howitzers will be handled by light artillery divisions. The howitzers ideally work for 24 to 30 km.

“It’s surely an important and required capability upgrade. No doubt, moving heavy guns around is simple. But it takes around two days for soldiers to Tezu, a forward post. The area of Tezu is situated 250km south of Kibithu, which is along the LAC and accounts for the army’s eastern linked operations.

The M777s are considered as a key part of the army’s field weaponry rationalization plan (FARP), get cleared in the year 1999. Approx 50,000-crore FARP fixed on the road map for introduction of new 155mm weaponry, which includes tracked self- driveled guns, truck-mounted gun techniques, wheeled self-propelled guns and towed artillery pieces. The plan is aimed to equip 169 artillery regiments with an approx 3,000 guns over the next period. 

Soon, the Indian Army will increase new seven regiments with the 145 howitzers for the eastern and northern areas. BAE Systems is expected to supply 25 ready-built howitzers and the outstanding 120 guns will be created locally in teamwork with Mahindra Defence under the India initiative of Modi government’s. The army is expected to find all the howitzers by the end of 2021.

After the Bofors scandal, the M777s were the initial artillery guns to be placed ordered in the late 1980s. Now, in 2019, Nirmala Sitharaman, defense minister of India has dedicated the M777s to the country. The howitzers possess better tactical mobility as they are prepared from titanium alloy and weigh just 4,218kg. The weight is just half of the traditional artillery guns moved to the eastern and northern areas.


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