Govt acts on General VK Singh's complaint, fast-tracks acquisition of weapons
The new steps significantly include seeking the Planning Commission's sanction for 14 strategic railway lines, mostly along the western and eastern fronts, for "quick troop mobilization and logistics sustenance'' in times of conflict, sources said.
An empowered committee has also been constituted under defence secretary Shashikant Sharma to examine the "detailed project reports'' of the Army's proposed "capability development plan on the Northern Borders'', worth Rs 26,155 crore that is slated for completion by 2020-2021. There is already an ongoing Rs 9,243 crore project for "infrastructure development in the Eastern Theatre'' by 2016-2017.
All this is critical since China can now move around 30 divisions (each with over 15,000 soldiers) to the borders within 30 days to outnumber Indian forces by at least 3:1 after undertaking massive infrastructure development all along the 4,057-km Line of Actual Control. Beijing, in fact, has recently taken to holding regular air and land combat exercises in the high-altitude Qinghai-Tibet Plateau to flex its military might............
FAST TRACK MEASURES
14 Strategic Railway Lines:
Eastern: Murkongseld-Pasighat-Rupai, Misamari-Tawang, North Lakimpur-Along-Silapathar.
Southern: Jodhpur-Shergarh-Phalsund, Jodhpur-Jaisalmer.
Central: Rishikesh-Karanprayag-Chamoli, Dehradun-Uttarkashi, Tanakpur-Jauljibi, Tanakpur-Bageshwar
Northern: Jammu-Akhnoor-Poonch, Pathankot-Leh, Srinagar-Kargil-Leh
Empowered committee headed by defence secretary to monitor "capability development plan on the Northern Borders'' worth Rs 26,155 crore, slated for completion by 2020-2021.
Empowered committee headed by Army vice-chief to fast-track equipment for Special Forces. These include advanced assault rifles, carbines, all-terrain multi-utility vehicles, GPS navigation systems, modular acquisition devices, laser range-finders, underwater vehicles, combat free-fall parachutes and the like.
Committee to examine Army's case for attack helicopters and other "combat aviation assets''. Army Aviation Corps wants a mix of reconnaissance, utility, tactical battle-support, armed and attack helicopters as well as tactical airlift fixed-wing aircraft in the long term.
4th regiment of BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles for Rs 4,100 crore.
Two regiments of Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launchers for Rs 2,136 crore.
10,000 Konkurs-M anti-tank guided missiles for Rs 1,223 crore from Russia.
10,000 3UBK-Invar missiles for T-90S tanks for Rs 1,386 crore from Russia.
15,000 3UBK-Invar missiles for T-90S tanks for Rs 2,079 crore from Bharat Dynamics.
66,000 "armour-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot'' tank shells for Rs 1,386 crore.
Two troops of Heron UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) for Rs 1,200 crore from Israel.
145 M-777 ultra-light howitzers for $ 647 million from US.