The DRDO is working on light tank which is a tracked amphibious light tank. It is based on the “Sarath” Chassis, a licenced variant of BMP, built by the Ordnance Factory Medak with a French GIAT TS-90 turret and 105 mm gun. This vehicle is designed to carry high caliber weapons without sacrificing mobility.
During the 73-day Doklam stand-off with India where more than 12000 PLA troops, 150 tanks, and artillery guns were reportedly involved, Beijing had displayed its capability to move tanks quickly near the Indian border.
This has forced Indian military to revive its eight-year-old plan which was shelved in 2009 after detailed deliberation on technical requirement. The proposed light tanks will be capable of operating at heights of more than 3000 meters of Himalayan terrain, according to an official of Indian defense ministry.
China has already started deployment of its Type-15 Light Tank (preview image) in Tibet area.
During an interview with Bussiness World Dr G Satheesh Reddy, Secretary DDR&D & Chairman DRDO (R) noted that the need of light weight tank is felt in today’s scenario especially for the mountainous regions. The configuration is worked out.
The USP of DRDO’s proposed light tank for the Indian Army is that it will be fitted with High Altitude Operable Power pack (Engine + Transmission) of 1000hp and will be capable of firing multiple ammunition. This tank may be called as “highest altitude operable tank in the globe”. The design work has commenced and we will bring out the timelines.Dr G Satheesh Reddy, Chairman DRDO
Source: Business World with additional inputs from open domain