India will reopen a long-delayed artillery procurment programme, with a request for proposal (RFP) to global defence suppliers for the procurement of 814 motorised howitzers to arm 40 regiments of the Indian Army.

Under the army’s Rs20,000-crore artillery modernisation programme, the country will purchase 200 17t motorised 155mm/52-calibre mounted gun systems from overseas and a further 614 howitzers will be manufactured domestically under transfer of technology.

The clearance for the project has been given by the country’s Defence Acquisitions Council.

The project is expected to deploy 2,814 guns of different types while the army wants ultra-light howitzers to aid swift deployment in inaccessible areas with the help of helicopters.