Indian Army facing Chinese aggression at the borders will soon be fortified with all new mine-proof Futuristic Infantry Combat Vehicles (FICV) and special high altitude vehicles. The military hardware is being manufactured at Ordnance Factory Medak, at Yeddumailaram in Sangareddy district. The FICV will be equipped with Instant Fire Detection and Suppression system (IFDSS).
The only Ordnance Factory in the Telugu speaking States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, which played a strategic role in building and supplying military hardware since its inception in 1984, is developing a prototype for Wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicles to move on plain surface.
Advances in the flagship Sarath BMP 2 armoured vehicles are also made by the factory, which has so far rolled out more than 3,000 armoured vehicles. New BMP will be equipped with night vision capability, which gives the tank driver, commander, and gunman a 360-degree view even at night. Currently, the BMP lacks night vision capability, literally leaving the 14.5-ton metal giant blind after sunset.
In the month of February alone, the Ordnance Factory had dispatched more than three dozen Sarath BMP 2 to Galwan Valley.
When asked about the dispatch of unusual number of BMPs particularly at a time when Chinese forces appeared taking a back step on LAC, factory’s General Manager Alok Prasad said: “their aggregation is our preparedness.”
Indian Army has deployed BMP 2 armoured vehicles in response to the Chinese side building up the presence of heavy artillery, troops and armoured vehicles, to counter the threat to the Darbuk–Shyok-Daulat Beg Oldi (DSDBO) road, a crucial road for the Indian forces.
Mr. Prasad said that every year the factory rolls out 125 new infantry combat vehicles, which is high and “with advances in technology, we are planning to increase the manufacturing capacity in the future.”
The Ordnance Factory will start overhauling BMP, apart from producing the new vehicles. “We will be overhauling at least 100 BMP of Indian Army per year, and with this, we can say that manufacturing capacity will be more than 200,” the General Manager said.
According to him, the hull and turret of Arjun Main Battle Tank (MK-1A), which was handed over to the Indian Army by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month, are manufactured at Ordnance Factory Medak. “Even the first Arjun MBT tank was assembled here,” he said.
“This is the only factory in the country which is producing infantry combat vehicles. The quality of vehicles is amongst the best in the world,” Mr. Prasad said.
Ordnance Factory Day was observed on March 18 to commemorate the foundation of the first Ordnance Factory in colonial India at Cossipore near Kolkata in 1801.