The Standing army of the world’s second largest is woefully short on ammunition and in the last few years there has not been a remarkable changes, top auditor of the country told the Parliament on Friday.
Since 2015, it is the second report of the Audit watchdog’s on the shortage of ammunition in the army. In 2013, it had gone by stock levels in the last one, and warned that a war can not be fighted by the army beyond 15 to 20 days.
Report of Fridays was lamented that despite highlighting "serious concerns" in its earlier report, "no significant improvement took place in the critical deficiency in availability and quality of ammunition... since March 2013".
In 2013, by the defence ministry a Rs. 16,500 crore plan was drawn up that targetted wiping the shortages by 2019 hasn't taken off yet. "Into the contract no case had culminated as we have noticed," the Comptroller and Auditor General's report said.
Of the 152 types of ammunition used by the military, the report said availability of 55 per cent types was below the minimum inescapable requirement for operational preparedness. The army had a stock for another 40 per cent types of ammunitions for less than 10 days. The availability of high-calibre ammunitions for tanks and artillery meant to sustain superior fire power in a cross-border war "are in more alarming state".
Fitted to an artillery shell just before firing - had declined from 89 per cent in 2013 by just six percentage points - it also pointed that the deficiency of fuzes. This means the army still can't use 83 per cent of ammunition for tanks and artillery.
There was no immediate comment from the government on the audit report