155mm Mountain Gun: Maharashtra MSME Defence Expo 2024 Unveils Weapon Against Enemies in Desert and Mountains

For the first time in the country, the Maharashtra government has organized the MSME Defence Expo in Pune, starting Saturday. Approximately 465 small and medium Defence equipment manufacturing companies are participating in the event. Among the highlights is the display of the 155 mm Mountain Gun developed by DRDO, showcasing its capabilities to the world. 

These field guns are designed to be deployed swiftly, whether on the peaks of mountains like in Kargil or in the deserts of Thar, enabling them to change positions rapidly due to being mounted on heavy vehicles. In the future, these guns will prove instrumental in neutralizing threats posed by China and Pakistan on both eastern and western fronts.

India’s Indigenous 155 mm Mountain Gun: A Technological Triumph

India has become the third country in the world to possess the 155 mm gun. Scientist Shailesh Gavaskar of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), based in Ahmednagar, revealed that the gun was developed at the Vehicle Research and Development Establishment (VRDE) of DRDO. Industry partners BEML and Bharat Forge have also contributed to the development of the gun system. 

Similar guns exist in France (Caesar) and Israel (Adamos), but India’s indigenous mountain gun surpasses them in terms of capability and range. With a range of 45 kilometers and a speed of 80 kilometers per hour, its mobility can be altered within minutes. Its ability to change location immediately after firing, termed as ‘shoot and scoot,’ enhances its tactical advantage significantly.

Bharat Forge to Begin Production After Three Successful Trials

In the coming years, the Indian Army will be equipped with the indigenous 155 mm gun, marking a significant milestone. Private sector companies are gearing up for its production, with plans for potential exports to other nations. The gun has already undergone three successful trials. Recently, it underwent trials at the Pokhran Firing Range in collaboration with the Indian Army. In the upcoming days, trials will be conducted in mountainous regions. 

Upon completion of all trials, its technology will be transferred. Negotiations are underway between Pune-based company Bharat Forge for this purpose. The company has already developed several field gun systems and is in talks for exports with some countries.

Dialogue Initiative: Engaging One Lakh Students in Three Days

In a pioneering effort to bolster the small and medium-scale industries in the Defence manufacturing sector, an automotive hub in Pune has initiated a dialogue program for the first time. Ganesh Nibe, Chairman of the organizing partners Nibe Industries, revealed that over the next three days, one lakh engineering students will engage in dialogue sessions. The expo sees participation from 465 companies, with registrations from 10,000 additional firms online. 

Visitors will interact with company representatives and military officers. On the inaugural day, Deputy CM of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis, Air Force Chief Air Marshal VR Choudhary, and Lieutenant General AK Singh, Commander of Southern Command, were in attendance, marking the significance of the event.

Niyati Rao

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