The Ministry of Defence (MoD) on Monday announced that it’s acquisition wing had signed contracts with three Indian companies for supply of six regiments of the Pinaka Rocket System to be deployed along borders with Pakistan and China.
A look at the indigenously developed rocket system named after Lord Shiva’s bow, its role in the battlefield and importance of the latest acquisition, which will be complete by 2024.
In the battlefield, long range artillery systems like Pinaka are used for attacking the adversary targets prior to the close quarter battles which involve smaller range artillery, armoured elements and the infantry.
The development of the Pinaka was started by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in the late 1980s, as an alternative to the multi-barrel rocket launching systems of Russian make, called like the ‘Grad’, which are still in use.
After successful tests of Pinaka Mark-1 in the late 1990, it was first used in the battlefield during the Kargil War of 1999, quite successfully. Subsequently multiple regiments of the system came up over the 2000s.
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“These six Pinaka regiments comprise 114 launchers with Automated Gun Aiming and Positioning System (AGAPS) and 45 Command Posts to be procured from TPCL and L&T and 330 vehicles to be procured from BEML. These six Pinaka Regiments will be operationalised along the Northern and Eastern Borders of our country further enhancing the operational preparedness of our armed forces. Induction of six Pinaka regiments is planned to be completed by 2024,” a statement from the MoD said.
The ministry has called this step a major boost to ‘Make in India.’ “This is a flagship project showcasing public private partnership under the aegis of Government of India (DRDO and MoD) enabling ‘Aatmnirbharta’ in cutting edge Defence technologies,” it said.