India faces acute shortage of ammunition: CAG tells Defence Ministry
Public accounts watchdog CAG on Friday pulled up the Defence Ministry on the issue of ammunition management in Army.
New Delhi: Public accounts watchdog CAG on Friday pulled up the Defence Ministry on the issue of ammunition management in Army, saying acute shortage of ammunition was a serious cause of concern directly impairing the operational readiness of the force.
"While availability of authorised stock against War Wastage Reserve (WWR) to meet the expected duration of operation formed the basic criteria for ensuring the operational readiness of the Army, we found during the review that against the WWR of 40 (I) days, the availability of ammunition was only in 10 percent of the total types of ammunition held (March 2013).
"Further, in 50 percent of the total types of ammunition, the holding was 'critical' i.e., less than 10 (I) days," the Comptroller & Auditor General of India said in its report tabled in Parliament on Friday.
The CAG said it observed that the overall holding had been continuously depleting over the years and was more prominent in high calibre ammunition, adding the percentage of high calibre ammunition, which was critical, ranged up to 84 percent during the five years period of audit.
"To tide over the persistent acute shortages, the AHQ had set (1999) a minimum threshold of MARL (Minimum Acceptable Risk Level) 20 (I) days to be achieved first. We found that even after 15 years, the threshold of MARL could not be achieved. The acute shortage was a serious cause of concern directly impairing the operational readiness of the Army," it said.
According to CAG , the inability of OFB to meet the demand of Army was a major cause for shortage of ammunition.
"OFB, which had a limited production capacity vis-a-vis the requirement of Army, accepted the targets for supply of ammunition covered under the Roll on Indent in mutual consultation with AHQ. It however, failed to supply the accepted quantities, and there was shortfall in 54 to 73 percent types of ammunition.
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