CAG criticises Indian Army for slack maintenance of weapons systems
The Comptroller and Auditor General has slammed the army for not being able to effectively maintain large inventory of critical weapon systems including radars and battle tanks.
The CAG also took strong objection to inordinate delays by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in construction of 61 strategically-important roads, having a total length of 3,409 KM, under the Indo China Border Roads (ICBRs) project.
In a report which was tabled in Parliament, the CAG criticised the army for failing to come up with any long-term perspective plan for creation of infrastructure for newly- inducted military systems.
Citing examples of delays in maintenance of key weapon platforms, it said against the norm of 153 days, it took the army 1,512 days for the overhauling of BMP Infantry Combat Vehicles.
“Similarly, for Tanks T-72, the delay ranged up to 836 days against the norm of 144 days. Overhaul of Radar and its variants also experienced delays up to 921 days,” the report said.
It specifically mentioned about lack of facility for repair and overhaul of Main Battle tank Arjun which were inducted into the army from 2004 and is due for overhaul from 2020-21.
“In case of Tank T-72, the quantum of backlog of overhaul was 713 at the end of 2010-11 and 479 at the end of 2015-16 which constitutes around 20 per cent of total holding,” said the report on working of Army’s Base Workshops covering a period of six years from 2010-11 to 2015-16.
The report suggested the army should have a detailed plan to keep the weapons system available for any eventuality.
Referring to maintenance of armoured recovery vehicles (ARV WZT 2), the CAG said the facility for overhaul of the fleet was set up in March 2009 after 28 years of its introduction.
“The vehicle was due for overhaul since 1996-97, but only 22 ARV WZT-2 could be overhauled against the total strength of 222. The equipment was likely to be de-inducted by 2018,” said CAG.