In a move that would enable the start of indigenous serial production of howitzers, the Indian Army is expected to successfully complete the trials of 155 mm/52 calibre Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) within the next two months, reports Janes.
Two different types of ATAGS which are jointly developed by the state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO) and private sectors companies like Tata Power SED, Bharat Forge and Kalyani Strategic Systems are being tested by the Indian Army in Rajasthan’s Pokhran.
Once the trials are completed in July, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) will issue a request for proposals to both Tata Power and Bharat Forge for the supply of G1 and G2 variants of the guns, respectively. MoD is supposed to purchase 150 guns at an estimated expenditure of Rs 3,665 crores.
Based on performance and commercial bids, either Tata Power's G1 or Bharat Forge's G2 is expected to be shortlisted for procurement. Officials said the lowest bidder will be awarded a contract to build 100 ATAGSs while the runner-up will be allowed to manufacture the rest.
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