New Delhi: The indigenously developed Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) is the best in the world. Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) claimed that henceforth, India would not have to import artillery guns.
ATAGS Howitzer, indigenously developed by DRDO, is being tested consistently. The guns were tested in Nagar in Maharashtra at the beginning of this month. After that, tests were conducted even in Odisha. Many tests of this gun have been performed even near the Chinese border in Sikkim and Pokhran near the Pakistan border, and nearly 2,000 rounds have been fired using these guns.
The gun developed by DRDO has proved to be the best artillery gun in the world. Shailendra V Gade, the Project Director of ATAGS project of the DRDO, claimed that this indigenously developed gun is better than the Bofors Gun, Israeli Athos and French Nexter. ATAGS has a range of 48 kilometres and is capable of fulfilling all the requirements of the Army. Indian Army needs 1,500 artillery guns. The Army has also registered a demand for 150 ATAGS and 114 Dhanush artillery guns. But looking at the performance of the ATAGS, the Army will not have to look beyond this gun. Gade expressed confidence that 1,800 ATAGS guns will fulfil the requirements of the Indian Army.
Gade claimed that the enemy could not reach us as we will be outside the range of the enemy guns, but with the range of 48 kilometres, the enemy will undoubtedly be reachable. The range of the Indian ATAGS is more than the guns in the Pakistani and Chinese armies. Gade underlined that no other country has guns to match the range and precision of the ATAGS.
Indian Army is contemplating the purchase of 1,600 artillery guns. Israeli Athos is under consideration. Preparations are on to purchase at least 400 guns on priority. Against this background, Gade drew attention to the capabilities of the ATAGS. India has not purchased artillery guns since the decade of 1980. Despite a requirement being there, the purchase of guns was prolonged. But since the last five to six years, stress is being given on expeditiously fulfilling the needs of the military and the development programs for indigenous manufacture of weapons also have been accelerated. Under this, the 155mm/ 52 calibre ATAGS has been developed. As per reports, these guns will soon be inducted in the Indian Army.