merlin wrote:That Saurav Jha article offers much food for thought. I wonder why the IA is not pushing for private sector participation in the production of the INSAS system of rifles if it feels that there are production issues with OFB?
The whole thing just smacks of import-if-import-option-is-available to me. No long term goal of helping OFB or DRDO (if IA feels that this is a design issue) make it better. And the funny thing is that they want OFB (again!) to make the new imported rifles under license. So now they have no issues with OFB!
I believe they tried some time back and the OFB guys threatened to go on strike in the other divisions as well. Here's a link about it
Some select quotes by the worthies from that article:
Ordnance factory staff fear job insecurity
TRICHY: Employees of the Ordnance Factory Tiruchirappalli (OFT) on Wednesday staged a demonstration against the ministry of defence for deciding to stop procuring small rifles from OFT and three other government rifle factories. The move, according to employees, would give the impression that their jobs were not secure.
As many as 1,600 OFT technical staff owing allegiance to various employees unions demanded that the ministry allow OFT, Ordnance Factory in Nalanda, Small Arms Factory in Kanpur and Rifle Factory in Ishapore to go on with manufacturing of rifles with state-of-the-art features for supply to the Indian Army instead of importing such arms from foreign countries and allowing private companies to manufacture arms in India.
"...By stopping the manufacture of small rifles, our staff could suffer financial loss as they will not get overtime duty and other benefits," he added.
"If they do not consider our demand, we will go on strike," said Chandrasekaran.
Gotta love it that they're demanding overtime pay as well! And this was for an order to manufacture 19,000 rifles among 4 factories in one year. Why they need overtime for this order needs some explaining as well.
The trouble is that IA is dependent on OFB for a lot of other stuff besides firearms, so they can't afford to have the whole lot going on strike.