The Government of India has signed contracts worth Rs25.8bn ($353.63m) to procure Pinaka missiles for the army.
The Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) acquisition wing signed contracts with Bharat Earth Movers (BEML), Tata Power Company (TPCL) and Larsen & Toubro (L&T) for six Pinaka regiments, which will be supplied to the Regiment of Artillery of the Indian Army.
The procurement will include 114 launchers with Automated Gun Aiming & Positioning System (AGAPS) and 45 Command Posts from TPCL and L&T.
BEML, a public sector undertaking, will deliver 330 vehicles.
Developed indigenously by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the Pinaka Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) is a multi-barrel rocket launch system.
Each Pinaka missile is capable of carrying a 100kg payload for a range of 40km.
Once delivered, the six Pinaka regiments will be operationalised along the northern and eastern borders of India.
The project requires companies to source at least 70% of raw materials locally.
The induction of these six regiments is set to be completed by 2024.
Notably, the decision comes at a time when there is a fresh flare up at the border between India and China where the armed forces of the two sides are engaged in a military standoff for the past several months.
India claimed to overcome Chinese incursion attempts to occupy a strategic hill near the Pangong Tso lake. Government sources told Reuters that India mobilised forces after spotting Chinese troops’ movement to prevent further intrusion.
The Chinese side, however, dismissed the allegations.