India Clears $660 Million Deal For M777 Artillery Guns

The Indian Army got a shot in the arm today with the defence ministry clearing its long-pending $660 million (Rs.3,000 crore) proposal to buy 145 ultra-light howitzer guns to add teeth to its ageing inventory.

This is the first time the army is buying artillery guns in 27 years, since the Bofors guns payoff scandal broke out in the late 1980s.

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), headed by Defence Minister A K Antony, cleared the deal for the M777 BAE Systems guns that will be bought through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) route of the US government.

The purchase comes in the wake of Indian Army chief Gen. V K Singh writing to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in March highlighting the gaps in its preparedness.


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