Jaitley says military reasonably equipped

Image: Jaitley says military reasonably equipped
Image Source: RediffMail

Defence Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday told the Rajya Sabha that the armed forces were “reasonably and sufficiently equipped” to defend the “sovereignty of the country”, amid concerns raised by parliamentarians regarding a CAG report that the Army had critical shortage of ammunition.

Mr. Jaitley’s response came after opposition members raised the issue of defence preparedness in the wake of a CAG report tabled in the Parliament recently and called the previous Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar a “non-performer”.

The CAG stated that the Army faces a shortfall of 40% ammunition and only 61 out of 152 types of ammunition were available. The Army is supposed to hold stocks of ammunition for 40 days of an intense war.

Mr. Jaitley clarified that the CAG report had reference to the shortage of ammunition in relation to a point of time.

The Opposition, however, wasn’t satisfied with the reply and posed tough questions.

About the CAG report:

Image: CAG Report

For complete details, read this: MAJOR DEFICIENCIES IN ARMY’S AMMUNITION RESERVES

CAG, in its report, presented a dismal picture of the Army’s War Wastage Reserve (WWR) ammunition, especially of high caliber equipment needed to wage intense war.

The report tabled on Friday is an evaluation of the availability of WWR ammunition in the Army during the period 2013-14 to 2016-17 (till September 2016).

 

Reference(s):

The Hindu Newspaper (You can download the newspaper for free from a link given on a FB page – UPSC Aspirants Forum)

MAJOR DEFICIENCIES IN ARMY’S AMMUNITION RESERVES

Image: CAG Report

At a time when India is caught in a major military standoff with China at Doklam, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has presented a dismal picture of the Army’s War Wastage Reserve (WWR) ammunition, especially of high calibre equipment needed to wage intense war.

The report tabled on Friday is a follow-up audit on the measures taken after the CAG’s earlier report on “Ammunition Management in Army”, tabled in 2015. This new report is an evaluation of the availability of WWR ammunition in the Army during the period 2013-14 to 2016-17 (till September 2016)

On the efforts to procure ammunition, the CAG noted that there continued to be a critical deficiency in the availability and quality of ammunition supplied by the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) since March 2013.

About War Wastage Reserves (WWR):

Image: War Wastage Reserves

War Wastage Reserves are collections of military material held in reserve in case of war. This includes bullets and other form of ammunition, as well as equipment, weapons and fuels.

In India, the norm is that WWR should last for 40 days of intense fighting, allowing time for production to be ramped up and delivered to the military.

However, as per the CAG report, the situation is bit grim in the country.

About Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG):

Image: CAG
Source: ToI

Article 148 of the Constitution of India provides for an independent office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG). He is the head of the Indian Audit and Accounts Department.

The duty of the CAG is to uphold the Constitution of India and laws of Parliament in the field of financial administration. It audits all receipts and expenditure of the Government of India and the state governments, including those of bodies and authorities substantially financed by the government.

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar said that the CAG shall be the most important Officer under the Constitution of India.

 

Reference(s):

The Hindu Newspaper (You can download the newspaper for free from this facebook page – UPSC Aspirants Forum)

Indian Polity by Laxmikanth