Pinaki Bhattacharya
03:40 PM, July 2, 2015

The Indian MoD may issue a new Request for information (RFI) for procurement of the Future Infantry Combat Vehicle(FICV) either under the Make (Indian) or Buy and Make (Indian) programs.

Informed sources told correspondent that a General Staff Qualitative Requirement (GSQR) for the vehicle is being prepared which could eventually lead to an RFI.

There was speculation that the FICV program had been abandoned following the issue of an RFI for the future ready combat vehicle (FRCV) a fortnight ago. The FRCV program proposes the design and development of a modular system of vehicles to replace the T-72 tanks and spawn a host of variants including an armored fighting vehicle.

The FICV was the Indian MoD's first program where local companies would be partly funded for the development of defence products. Two consortium had been selected, one led by the Mahindra group and another by the Tata group. Both consortia had exhibited models of their respective vehicles at the DEFEXPO exhibition in Delhi four years ago. However, the MoD has been silent on the selection since then.

The sources said that the FICV is conceived to be a light armored vehicle able to carry personnel and light weapons. The vehicle could be tracked and also wheeled. Details of what features are expected of it are still being drawn up and the development stage will come much later. Thus sources say no decision has been made whether it will be built by under Make (Indian) or Buy and Make (Indian).