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Request for Information (RFI) issued by the Indian Army seeking a 155mm/52 calibre Towed Gun System (TGS) has sparked debate about the suitability of such artillery in modern warfare. While the move appears tailored for the Israeli ATHOS system, concerns remain regarding the vulnerability of towed guns in the face of evolving threats.

Major General Atanu K. Pattanaik (Retd) highlights that the RFI’s weight limit of 15 tonnes favors the ATHOS, weighing less than its indigenous counterpart, the ATAGS. This raises concerns of potential bias towards the Israeli system.

Pattanaik emphasizes the Ukraine war’s stark revelation – towed guns are increasingly susceptible to counter-battery fire due to faster target acquisition and engagement by advanced long-range weaponry. Their limited mobility makes them vulnerable within the reduced reaction time of 4 minutes, raising questions about their continued relevance.

The General emphasizes the importance of vigilance by both the military and media to ensure strategic autonomy. He cautions that relying on outdated technologies like towed guns could hinder India’s long-term security goals.

This RFI presents a crucial juncture for the Indian Army to re-evaluate its artillery needs and prioritize solutions that align with modern warfare realities and strategic autonomy aspirations.