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Now, soldiers to be equipped with multi-caliber weapons, grenades

A soldier getting training with the latest version of the INSAS rifle. -- Image credit: Wikipedia

NEW DELHI (BNS): To better equip its 1.1 million strong armed forces, India is planning to design weapons and gear for individual soldiers through a public-private partnership called Futuristic Infantry Soldier-As-A-System (F-INSAS), Defence Minister A K Antony has told the Parliament.

“Integrated Management System with Public-Private-Partnership is contemplated in order to produce cost-effective system in large quantity,” Antony told the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.

The gear will improve soldiers' firepower, communications, and mobility.

“With change in the operational environment to keep pace with new technology, qualitative requirements for a new generation assault rifle of current technology have been spelt out by the Army,” a statement issued by the Ministry of Defence quoted Antony as saying.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will develop two critical technologies – a multi-caliber individual weapon and an air-bursting grenade for this purpose.

Other arms and gear will include anti-tank guided missiles, thermal sights and launchers; bulletproof vehicles; anti-materiel rifles; advanced carbines; surveillance radars; ground sensors; secure communications; guided ammunition; laser rangefinders; and light clothing and bulletproof jackets.

The new clothing will protect the soldiers from nuclear-biological-chemical attack.

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