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11:31 AM, July 22, 2017
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Critical Ammunition Shortage In Indian Army: Audit Report
Ammunition

India’s Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has slammed the state-run Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) saying that among 152 types of ammunition used, 40 percent would run out in less than 10 days.

The report by the CAG has raised issues of critical shortages in ammunition mentioning that another 55 percent of the ammunition was below the Minimum Acceptable Risk Level (MARL), Firstpost reported Saturday.

MARL is the minimum amount of ammunition which has to be maintained at all times using which the army can fight for 20 days.

In the report which was tabled in the Parliament on Friday, the OFB was criticized by CAG for inadequate quality of ammunition supplied to the Army since March 2013. It also noted that the stock of fuzes for the artillery ammunition was at 17 percent, various local media reported Saturday.

Fuze is considered to be the brain of the artillery ammunition that is fitted to the shell just before assembly/firing. This deficiency means that 83 percent of the high caliber artillery ammunition held by the army will be useless in an operation.

The army should have ammunition for 40 days of intense war fighting, according to the government orders in force. However, the report shows that as of September 2016, only 20 percent, that is 31 out of 152 types of ammunition will last in a 40-day war.

The CAG said despite serious concerns highlighted in a high-level report on 'Ammunition management in Army' in 2015, no significant improvement took place in the critical deficiency in the availability of ammunition and quality of ammunition supplied by the OFB.

"Shortfall in meeting the production target by OFB continued. Further, a majority of the procurement cases from other than OFB which were initiated by Army headquarters during 2009-13 were pending as of January 2017," the CAG said in the report.

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