nelson wrote:If people had hopes of larger order for Mk II they were mistaken. Yes truth is bitter, but it does not stop from being truth. The same has been brought out by the article which started this round of discussion.
Informed people on this forum have long speculated that Indian Army will find ways and means to KILL the Arjun program. And this problem dates from late 90s to early 2000s when IA already had substantial T-72 in service. No other authority than General SR Chowdhury has commented on the same in his autobiography. Every thing else flows from this mindset - if the IA did not want the Arjun tank, it could have said so in 90s. I'm yet to see a single officer or a statement from an officer stating so in plain words - what these worthy gentlemen have been doing is to discredit the Arjun program on one point or other. The weight issue is the final argument when everything else has failed.
You referred to T-90 being purchased as a counter to purchase of T-80UD by PA - well, how many T-80UD did it buy? And was there any follow on order after the first purchase? You see, unlike the IA, PA long realized that it cannot rely only on imports and that too, for such a critical system as an MBT. So, when the AL-Khalid program wasn't doing too well, they got T-80UD as an 'INTERIM' measure. And then stuck to Al-Khalid - and today, they have the second version of it. That is called iterative development.
I have maintained through this discussion that a number of factors would have gone behind the reasoning in 2007 to restrict Arjun to a particular theater of operations; one of them was the weight. I also told that 50T gross weight is sacrosanct, or nearly. As of now it remains so. As an example I told that there is no bridging system in Indian Army inventory which can take Arjun over a 10m gap.
Where was this 50T sacrosanct parameter when army asked for a 4-man tank? Or when Arjun rolled out of the CVRDE factory? Why bring up the weight factor now? All this while, IA never said anything about the weight and now suddenly, it has become the Sine qua non? Why the duplicity? the weight of the tank should have been the issue the very day is came out - why did the army not say so then and remain mum?
Why was the nation led on a wild-goose chase of wasted resources and time? Why was the nation made to bear of ignominy of its domestic tank program being subjected to external review because India Army said that the tank was not good enough?
Under normal circumstances, heads need to roll in the IA for wasting the tax-payer's money. And no, just because they wear OG does not make them beyond scrutiny. This is not someone's person fiefdom to order things around.
R&DE has been developing bridging systems as in the link provided. If one reads through carefully and correlates with other sources, it can be found that only one relevant system of MLC-70 has been inducted, that is Sarvatra and that too in limited number of units. Other systems are still under development or awaiting induction.
Oh! how quaint... this argument is beyond ridiculous actually.
So, let me get this straight - IA would have inducted the Arjun if it had substantial BLTs of MLC-70 class in 10M category.Right?
So, here is a requirement for 1,000+ modern MBTs and we've a domestic solution in the form of Arjun and yet, we don't see any enthusiasm from the IA to place orders for such bridging equipment. Why so? Was an RFP issued at any point in time for 10M MLC-70 class BLT or associated equipment? When we can import an ARV from Poland, what stops Army from importing such equipment from abroad?
I asked you this question earlier and I'm asking this of you again - what is the holding pattern of such equipment in IA? You have been quick to pontificate about lack of such equipment but have not commented on who is responsible for this lack?
Let me try some back of the envelope type of calculation here - we have 3 x armored divisions, 7 x armored brigades plus 6 x RAPID.
Now, assuming the Engineer Regiment (or Field Companies of brigades) of all these formations have 5 x BLT per Field Company (FC). And IIRC, an Engineer Regiment has 3 x FC. So, how many such systems do we need? - Armored Divisions (45)+RAPID (90)+Armored Bde (45). That makes it 180; let us add another 20% by way of contingency plus training. That makes it 216. Let us round this off to 300 - a very generous number.
NOTE: I've already over-compensated for RAPID even though they hold 1/3 the armor of AD.
Now, further suppose that IA decides to make only Southern Command as Arjun dominated formation. So, we have the 12 RAPID, 36 RAPID and 31 Armored Division plus an (I) armored brigade. So, even if I divide the number of BLTs required on prorate basis, what is the number required for 10M MLC-70 class equipment? So, IA did not induct Arjun in numbers because it could not order 50-60 10M MLC-70 bridging equipment?
Do you even realize how stupid this argument makes the decision makers within the IA look?
It is like saying the war was lost for want of a nail.
An armoured formation operating in almost any place across IB from Chhamb to Fort Abbas will face a number of natural and artificial obstacles. The assault bridging resources was not there for operating Arjun of 58.5 tons in such terrain. This has certainly contributed to the decision made in 2007. Even today the bridging capabilities does not exist.
Yes, the mythical bridging equipment argument again. I've asked this of you earlier - why don't you visit the Google Earth and Wikimapia and show me these 10M obstacles? You see, these have to pretty numerous and spread across the entire length (or, at least a major portion) to constitute such a challenge as to force IA to decide against inducting Arjun.
for starters, this map linked below is centered on the Hakra Canal Barrage from where it bifurcates and even feeds the DCB along the border. It runs till Fort Abbas and then some more. Why don't you spend some time on the map, use the distance measure tool on Wikimapia and let us know the 10M wide gaps which IA will for sure need to negotiate to reach its objectives.http://wikimapia.org/#lat=29.9334131&lon=73.374855&z=12&l=0&m=h
And mind you, exact 10M because that seems to be crux of the problem.
Widening of track width of Arjun Mk II and associated drawbacks of slipping chains from bogey wheels and stopping power minefield was an offshoot of the main discussion.
Is it? how many there are no such off-shoots about T-90 imaging system failure, IA running around to get a domestic fix once the Russian one failed, the use APU tech from Arjun on the vaunted T-90 and so on and so forth? Those somehow never made IA from not making further orders for T-90.
It has become the practice here to pillory the poster who does not conform to popular perception. The BRF of 10 years back was not like this. I make my decision to believe something based on my inputs and assimilation capability. I choose to place that in front of the forum. It is for others to accept it or ignore it. There is absolutely no need to make personal remarks and brand others in condescending tone and language. And Admins are party to that and justify their action too!
There are two things that you can do - (a) convey what you heard and be done with it (b) convey what you heard and defend the same because you believe in it.
You have chosen to take the second route so, rest assured, you'll be required to answer for your beliefs and provide back-up data. Something, you've not done. You're taken everything told to you at face value with-out questioning the logic and reason - good for you. But if you expect the same from people here, well, sorry mate, you just found out the hard way that it ain't gonna happen.
Given the ham-handed approach of the IA to Arjun program, it is difficult to accept whatever it says at face value.