'Arjun tank to be inducted into Armed Forces'

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New Delhi, May 7: Defence Minister A K Antony today ruled out abandoning the country's main battle tank Arjun and said the tanks sould soon be inducted into the armed forces after rectifying existing defects. "There is no question of abandoning the prestigious project. It is the country's first effort to produce such complex war machines and there are bound to be hiccups," Antony was quoted as saying in an interview with a news agency.

On Monday, Antony's deputy, Rao Inderjit Singh, had informed the Lok Sabha that the tank was found to have low accuracy, frequent power breakdowns and problems with its gun barrel in the recent accelerated user-cum-reliability trials. He also said that the tanks had problems with consistency and recorded failure of hydropenumatic suspension units and shearing of top rolls.

"The rectification of these defects and performance of the tanks are being closely monitored," Antony said.

Antony said there was some delay in the issue of tanks to the army due to design modifications and removal of defects noticed during various trials.

He said the manufacture of the tank was being monitored by a team headed by Director General of Mechanised forces and a steering committee under the chairmanship of the Secretary Defence Production and Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister.

The Minister's findings to the house came in the wake of his recent comments that the army is sabotaging the tanks' final pre-induction trials.

Singh said there was some delay in the issue of tanks to the army due to design modifications and removal of defects noticed during various trials. He said the manufacture of the tank was being monitored by a team headed by Director General of Mechanised forces and a steering committee under the chairmanship of the Secretary Defence Production and Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister.


ANI

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