Monday, May 27, 2024

Tata Advanced Systems To Supply Indian Air Force Supply 10,000 Bullet-Proof Jackets

By Staff Correspondent

In a significant boost to personnel, Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) has secured a contract to supply 10,000 bullet-proof jackets for the special forces and other personnel of the Indian Air Force (IAF), showing the increasing self-reliance in the defence sector.

The lightweight bullet-resistant body armour is expected to replace bulky and heavy jackets slowly being phased out from the entire armed forces.

“TASL has signed a contract for the supply of 10,000 numbers of bullet-proof jackets of medium and large size to Indian Air Force (IAF) in June 2022 after qualifying all the specifications, product testing and validation requirements,” a TASL spokesperson confirmed. The spokesperson pointed out that the supply of these bullet-proof jackets for the first time to the Indian Air Force is as per the terms of the contract.

The IAF has wanted to equip its Garud Commando Force with lighter jackets resistant to close combat weapons so that they are not a hindrance in the swift movement of the commandoes, said sources.

The TASL, however, did not reveal the worth of the BP jackets the IAF is buying from them. However, the defence arm of the TATAs stated that the TASL offers solutions for personal protection requirements by manufacturing bullet-resistant jackets, bullet-resistant helmets and associated solutions for the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Home Affairs and all state police departments.

“These protective equipment capabilities are combined with low weight, breathable comfort, keeping the body armour snug fit against the torso with larger protection area against higher threat protection,” it pointed out.

Apart from TASL other indigenous firms like Star Wire (India) Ltd and MKU (Kanpur) too are manufacturing body armour, taking up Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to shed dependence on imports for making BP jackets. According to a two-year-old NITI Aayog estimate, the tri-services and the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) like the Border Security Force (BSF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), and police need at least 3 lakh bullet-proof jackets.

Towards the last week of September, the Indian Army issued a Request For Information (RFI) for the procurement of 47,627 bullet-proof jackets along with accessories under the ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’ category with 60 per cent indigenous content. Now the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has developed a national specification offering 360-degree protection for domestic manufacturers to follow.


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