September 29, 2022

In yet another boost to Atmanirbhar Bharat, MoD places order for 118 MBT Arjun Mk-1A for Indian Army

  • DRDO-developed new variant of MBT to enhance firepower, mobility and survivability
  • Order worth Rs. 7,523 crore
  • 72 new features and more indigenous content compared to Mk-1
  • To open defence manufacturing avenue for 200 Indian vendors and create 8,000 jobs

New Delhi, Ministry of Defence (MoD) on September 23 placed an order with Heavy Vehicles Factory (HVF), Avadi, Chennai for supply of 118 Main Battle Tanks (MBTs) Arjun Mk-1A for the Indian Army. The order worth Rs. 7,523 crore will provide further boost to the ‘Make in India’ initiative in defence sector and is a big step towards achieving ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

It may be recalled that the Prime Minister had handed over the MBT Arjun Mk-1A to Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General M M Naravane in Chennai on February 14 this year.

The state of the art MBT Mk-1A is a new variant of Arjun Tank designed to enhance fire power, mobility and survivability. Infused with 72 new features and more indigenous content from the Mk-1 variant, the tank would ensure effortless mobility in all terrains besides precise target engagement during day and night. It has been designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) by incorporating numerous upgrades on Arjun MBT, which is in-service with the Indian Army.

The MK-1A is equipped with accurate and superior firepower, all-terrain mobility and an invincible multi-layered protection provided by an array of advanced technology systems. It can take on the enemy during day and night conditions and in both static and dynamic modes. By virtue of these capabilities, this indigenous MBT proves to be at par with any contemporary in its class across the globe.

This tank is particularly configured and designed for Indian conditions and hence it is suitable for deployment to protect the frontiers in an effective manner.

This production order to HVF, Avadi opens up a large avenue in defence manufacturing for over 200 Indian vendors including Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) with employment opportunities to around 8,000 people. This will be a flagship project showcasing the indigenous capability in cutting edge defence technologies.

The MBT Arjun Mk-1A has been designed and developed by Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE) along with other laboratories of DRDO within two years (2010-12). The development activities commenced from June 2010 and the tank was fielded for user trials in June 2012.

It took only two years to develop and field the MBT Arjun Mk-1A for user trials from the user requirement. Extensive trial evaluation was conducted in various phases covering 7000+ km (both in DRDO and user trials) of automotive and substantial firing of various ammunition during 2012-2015.

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