The Dream of Modern Bullet Proof's for Soldiers
The Committee during the course of examination of Demands for Grants 2009-10 had noted that there was deficiency of 186168 units of Bullet Proof Jackets. Even when the approval of Defence Acquisition Council was obtained on 19.10.2009 for purchase of the requisite number of BPJs during the Eleventh Plan,
The issue of purchase of desired BPJs is still fraught with various complications. The Committee understand during the course of deliberations on Demands for Grants of this year that the Ministry is confronting with some problems on issue of RFP. RFP was issued initially on 3rd March, 2011 however, due to problems envisaged during conduct of ballistic trials RFP was retracted on 9th December, 2011. Now, the suitable amendments are being made in the GSQR and fresh RFP would be issued.”
“Request for Proposal (RFP) for procurement of 1,86,138 Bullet Proof Jackets (BPJ) was prepared and issued on 03.03.11. Techno commercial offers from six vendors were received on 27.07.2011. However, the RFP had to be retracted on 09 December 2011 due to technical problems envisaged during ballistic trials. Subsequently, the GSQR was amended and approved by GSEPC on 11.04.2012. New RFP would be issued after procedure for trial Methodology is finalized.
“Another issue consistently been raised by the Committee is the weight of the Bullet Proof Jackets. When the issue was raised in the Seventh Report on Demands for Grants 2009-10, the Ministry in the Action Taken Note had stated that the weight of the BPJ is incremental from less than 4 Kgs to a maximum of 11.5 Kgs based on level of threat.
To substantiate the point of view of the Ministry, the Committee have been informed in the Action Taken Note that the soldier is not required to wear the BPJ at its maximum weight under low threat levels. Even when the proposals have been approved by DAC, the Ministry is confronting with RFP issues.
Initial RFP was retracted way back on 9th December 2011 due to some problem and till date fresh RFP has not been issued. The Committee express unhappiness over the way the procurement of such an important life saving items required for forces is being delayed.”
“The Committee deplore the way the Ministry has dealt with the issue of weight of BPJs whereby it has been stated that the soldier is not required to wear the BPJs at its maximum weight under low 16 threat levels. The Committee strongly recommend that at least now the initiatives should be taken to fast track the purchase of BPJs. Besides it should be ensured that the BPJs are of low weight and of world class quality.”
“RFP for procurement of Bullet Proof Jackets is under preparation and is likely to be issued shortly. GSQRs have been amended to provide the best Bullet Proof Jackets available to soldiers of the Indian Army.”
The Committee are astonished to find that despite the existing deficiency of 186138 Bullet Proof Jacket units leading to risking the life of as many soldiers and officers, the Ministry has yet not taken any concrete steps to procure Bullet Proof Jackets (BPJs) and procurement of the same is still at preparation of RFP stage.
Therefore, the Committee recommend that new Request for Proposal (RFP) should be immediately issued so that this life saving item should be procured urgently. While issuing the RFP, it should also be ensured that light weight BPJs of world class quality should only be procured.
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