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India clears towed gun system procurement

India's state-run Advanced Weapons and Equipment India Limited unveiled the Dhanush 155 mm/52 calibre towed howitzer (pictured above) at Defexpo 2022, held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. This is one of the gun options available to the Indian Army. (Janes/Kapil Kajal)

India's Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, has approved the procurement of the towed gun system (TGS) for the Indian Army.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said in a statement on 9 February that the procurement – approved through the provision of an ‘Acceptance of Necessity' (AoN) status under the ‘Buy (Indian)' category – includes 155 mm/52 calibre TGS.

The MoD added that the system should have a maximum weight of 15 tonnes. The maximum firing range of the system should be more than 40 km, and the gun must fire all in-service 155 mm ammunition.

In a request for information (RFI) document issued by the Indian Army in December 2022 supporting its acquisition of 155 mm/52 calibre TGS, the service said the systems will be used at India's northern and western borders.

The RFI added that the guns must be equipped with a Global Positioning System (GPS), an inertial navigation-based sight system with the capability to orient and fix the location of the system, and a fire-control system (FCS) with the capability to provide an optical sight for indirect firing day and night.

The procurement of the TGS is part of the Indian Army's Field Artillery Rationalisation Plan, which was unveiled in the 1990s to improve the firepower of the service.

The service seeks to procure 1,580 155 mm/52 calibre TGS, 814 mounted gun systems, 100 self-propelled howitzers (SPHs), and 145 lightweight howitzers as part of the plan.

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