Shailendra V Gade, a senior scientist in the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO), believes that the indigenously developed ATAGS howitzers can fulfil Indian Army’s requirement of 1,800 artillery gun systems. Asserting that there is no need to secure imports, Gade insisted that the ATAGS is the best gun in the world and can strike aim at the longest range of 48 kms, ANI reports.
“The Indian Army’s requirement is for 1,580 towed artillery guns and apart from that, they need 150 ATAGS and another 114 Dhanush guns. So, there is a requirement of a total of 1,800 guns. The way the ATAGS is performing and come up, I am sure that this entire requirement of 1,800 guns can be met by this gun only,” the agency quoted Gade.
The scientist was thus asked to compare the ATAGS with the seasoned Bofors guns available with the Army and ammunition possessed by China and Pakistan. He replied that the newly-developed weapon can fire five rounds in a minute whereas the others can shoot only three rounds.
“The enemy won’t be able to counter you as they would not be able to reach you but you can reach them at 48 kilometers. You can be eight kilometers behind their strike range but still hit them,” he revealed.
Gade believes that India has honed the core competence and technology to realise the country’s demands for high-quality guns. He even called the ATAGS to be futuristic in nature, saying that it will meet the forces’ requirement towards the end of this decade. The Indian Army is assessing the Israeli guns ATHOS for swift induction of 400 units as it is looking to obtain 1600 artillery guns.
Pitting ATAGS against ATHOS and French Nexter guns, Gade explained, “If you look at the qualitative requirements of the ATHOS and Nexter guns, the requirements of the ATAGS are very stringent. So, definitely, the guns systems are not very contemporary. If we look at the future as 2027-2030, the ATAGS is the answer for those times for the Indian Army.”