New weaponry for Army to counter terrorists

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Guwahati, Oct 23 (UNI) The Indian army has rolled out new weaponry to tackle insurgency.

As the army is more regularly called out to tackle terrorism, new tools of fighting have arrived and were presented before the media yesterday at Rangiya, about 45 kilometers from here.

These included a right-angled gun and a cricket ball that can deliver a googly with its vision.

Take the right-angled gun, for instance. Devised by the 621 Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Battalion under 21 Mountain Division based here, it helps a soldier hit the bull's eye around bends and from rooftops.

''What we have done is fold the butt of the INSAS rifle so that a soldier can shoot without getting into the line of fire of an extremist,'' says Lt Col JS Jaglan of 621EME.

The gun is not as simple as it sounds. What helps the user find the target are a laser pen and camera mounted on the nozzle, which are connected to an LCD monitor on the butt. All the user has to do to fire is let the laser beam rest on the target.

The foldable butt gun, however, needs the assistance of ballvision when it comes to raiding hideouts. Ballvision is a surveillance throw ball with a wireless camera that can be operated from 50 metres. ''It has a chargeable battery that gives up to 15 minutes of surveillance, sufficient for one operation,'' Jaglan explains. ''This cricket ball-like surveillance orb is self-stabilized and needs to be thrown inside a hideout to know where militants are positioned.'' According to 21 Mountain Division chief Maj Gen Chandra Prakash, the need to minimize collateral damage and avoid civilian casualty has been powering such innovations. ''Counter-insurgency is necessary, so are people-friendly operations,'' he says.

The innovations, he adds, complement the new technological imports to combat terrorism. These include the remotely operated tracked vehicle to detect and defuse IEDs. Almost like a robot, this vehicle can also fire at assailants.

Among the latest accessories is also the US-sourced Quikclot that stops bleeding instantly when applied on wounds. Available with most units across the country, Quikclot is not a regular army issue unlike featherweight pneumatic splinters.

Maj-Gen Prakash was confident that armed with new weaponry, the counter terrorism had become more effective and hence more and more militants were coming forward for talk.


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