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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Main Battle Tank [MBT] Arjun Mk. 2 - news & updates [Indian Army]

Updates on the development of the Mark 2 version of India's indigenous Main Battle Tank [MBT] Arjun.

FORCE Magazine has come out with  fine article detailing the development of the Mark II-variant of the Arjun Main Battle Tank [MBT]. The article was the outcome of an invitation to visit the Combat Vehicle Research & Development Establishment [CVRDE] - the DRDO lab spearheading the Arjun development project.


Reading the article leaves no doubts in the minds of the reader of Arjun's superior performance & capabilities over the Soviet-era T-series [& its derivative] hardware that make up the Indian Army's Armoured Corps. Despite this, the Indian Army's continued, steadfast aversion towards inducting the Arjun in any meaningful numbers, [leading cost reduction due to economies of scale], can not be explained with any genuine arguments.

"After more than three decades of development, India’s Arjun Main Battle Tank (MBT) has literally emerged like a phoenix from the ashes, surprising even its most sceptical observers. Last year, the Arjun outgunned the Indian army’s T-72 and T-90 MBT’s, when trials were conducted with the respective units putting up their best tanks and personnel."

Such an outcome, despite the Army having over three decades of operational experience with the T-series tanks, as opposed to only a couple of years with the Arjun MBT. Tragic Funny thing is, the Army has been making series of Technology & capability demands of the Arjun, even when corresponding capabilities are absent on their current Soviet-era tanks. Yet despite their increasing requirements of incorporating additional, advanced features, which the Arjun's developers have successfully executed, they stipulate that the weight of the tank must not exceed what an average, less-featured Russian tank weighs. How does one rationalise such contrarian demands, other than to allude to less-than-honourable motives?

Read the full article: Pressure on the Ground

At the Bharat Rakshak Forum, a healthy discussion has ensued following this. Highlights all that is wrong with the Army's approach towards this indigenous programme of immense significance - do begin reading from here.

Acknowledgment of the superiority of the Arjun's performances comes from the country's former top brass themselves in this televised discussion, below.


Related: India's former Main Battle Tank [MBT] Vijayanta at Avadi [Photographs]