The issue of modernization of the weapons present with the Indian Army is once again hot. Presenting the report in the House on Tuesday, the Standing Committee of Parliament informed that 68% of the existing weapons with our army are old. With regard to modernization of their own armies and increasing military capability by Pakistan and China, the Standing Committee on the situation of the Indian Army has also expressed concern.
The concern has been expressed in the report submitted to the Parliament, headed by BJP MP Maj Gen Bhuvan Chandra Khanduri (retire). This situation is when India is the world’s largest arms buyer. The Standing Committee examined the budget allocated to the army during the year 2018-19. During this time, the budget was found to be inadequate. According to the committee, for the modernization of Army, Rs. 21,338 crore has been allocated. However, the need for 125 schemes already running, including the purchase of emergency, will not be fulfilled. The committee also said that the allocation of Rs 21,338 crore for modernization was also inadequate. Also commented that this did not even meet the expenses of Rs 29,033 crore previously marked. So, the army cannot do anything for its modernization. According to the committee, the Indian Army has only 8% of the weapons in the state of the art or the finest category. Overall, the army has 24% of the weapons. This 24% of the equipment is worth the use at the present time. But this figure is inadequate. Because the ideal situation for any army at the present time is that it has an average third-level vintage class, one-third of the current requirement, one-third of the modern equipment and one-third of the state-of-the-art category.
In front of the parliamentary committee, the army said that the country is in danger on two fronts. Pakistan and China are increasingly working on modernization of their armies. Also, China is making illegal construction around the border with India. These include roads and other constructions. But the Indian Army does not have a budget to continue its current programs. Referring to the attack on terrorist camps in Pathankot and Kashmir, increasing firing of Pakistan on the Line of Control and China’s aggressive approach to Dokalam, the army said that it needs more resources. Terming the budget allocated to the army as extremely low, the committee said that only 14% of the budget available to the army is available for modernization. On the other hand, 63% is spent on remuneration. 20% is spent on normal maintenance. Whereas 3% is spent on setting up infrastructure services. The committee has proposed in the report that the budget for modernization of the army should be between 22-25% of the total budget. On Monday, The ThinkTank International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Stockholm, claimed in its report that India is the world’s largest arms buyer. In order to meet the country’s defense needs and strengthen the army, India has bought the 12% of the arms purchased in the world between 2013-17. During 2008-12 and 2013-17, India’s arms imports grew by 24%. Russia is the first place in countries to supply weapons to India. According to the report, India spent about $ 100 billion in the last 10 years to buy arms.