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India to modernise Russian-made T-72 tanks: Antony

India will refurbish Russian-origin T-72 tanks operated by its Army
instead of completely phasing them out, Defence Minister A K Antony has
said.

While the Army has placed an order with DRDO to acquire
124 indigenously-built Arjun Main Battle Tanks (MBTs), “it intends to
retrofit/upgrade these tanks (T-72) to enhance their mission
reliability and life expectancy,” Antony told the Parliament.

The Army has so far received 85 Arjun MBT .

“Keeping
in view the production capacity for MBT Arjun Tanks and strategic
considerations, the Government is also exercising the option for
modernising T-72 tanks instead of total replacement of these tanks on
completion of their life span,” Antony said.

The Soviet-era T-72
Main Battle Tanks were acquired from Russia over 30 years ago. About
1600 such tanks are presently being operated by the Indian Arm