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By Bulbul Singh

15 May 13. The Indian Army has reissued a global tender to buy 100 numbers of wheeled Armored Personal Carriers (APCs) along with varieties of ammunition. The $200 million tender was first issued in 2009 but was cancelled as the Qualitative Requirements were regarded too complicated by the bidders and none of the overseas bidders could comply with the requirements. The Indian Army then floated a request for Information (RFI) in 2012, and last week a global tender has been issued.

While the tender has again been sent to the same vendors which were approached in 2009, officials say the Qualitative Requirements have now been watered down slightly, especially on the mobility front so that they are realistic.

The Request for Proposal (RFP) was issued last week to General Dynamics of United States, Rosoboronexport of Russia, Ukrainexport of Ukraine, Bumar Of Poland, Finmeccanica of Italy, BAE Systems of U.K. and KMW of Germany.

The global tender issued on ‘Buy Global’ basis also includes purchase of 60668 numbers of Armour Piercing, 91004 numbers of High Explosive rounds of the 25-40mm cannon, 886 436 rounds of the 7.62 coaxial Machine Gun and 84,100 rounds for the 25-40mm anti grenade launcher [AGL].

The Wheeled APCs are being procured for the Indian Army should have good road speed and as well as good cross country mobility and protection against mines, IEDs, small arms, grenades and artillery splinters. The Indian Army’s requirements include good observation facilities and ability to fire arms from within the vehicle. It should have a provision for fitment of armament to include machine gun, cannon, and Automatic Grenade Launcher.

The key features of APC will include mobility, firing on the move, night fighting capability, modern and secure communication systems, amphibious capability, water carriage facility, self-recovery capability and obstacle crossing capability.

The wheeled APC would be mounted with the Anti-Tank Guided Missile system in service with the Indian Army and the 25-40mm canon able to fire H.E. with a carriage for not less than 300 rounds at targets including helicopters at a distance of 2500 meters.

The requirements of the Indian Army also include all wheel drive; high power-to-weight ratio vehicles and capable to travel at 80kph and carry rocket launchers and GPS. Currently the Indian Army is using around 2,000 Russian BMP-1 and BMP-2 multipurpose armored vehicles, equipped with anti-tank missiles and other weapons.

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