The first indigenously built T-90 S tanks rolled out of the Heavy Vehicles Factory at Avadi, near here, on Monday, marking a significant phase of the indigenisation of the production of the state-of-the-art tanks in India.

So far, semi-knocked-down and fully-knocked-down tanks imported from Russia were being assembled at the facility, located in the outskirts of the city. The process of indigenisation was set in motion in 2004 after HVF gained experience in assembling the tanks following an agreement between the Indian and Russian governments.

Minister of State for Defence Pallam Raju, who flagged of the tanks, termed the induction of the tanks a “major milestone.”

“We have come a long way in the production of armoured vehicles,” he said and added that the Ordnance Factory Board, the Army and the Ministry of Defence cooperated well to ensure that the indigenous tanks rolled out at an early date.

The tanks will join the Army’s 73 Armoured Regiment, which will run futher field tests.