One FIR, Govt blacklists 7 firms, hits artillery upgrade

Incidentally, all three Indian firms blacklisted Thursday are also involved in the manufacture of ammunition components for the 155 mm artillery guns of the Army. The companies barred from business are:

Israeli Military Industries, Israel: The small arms manufacturer recently bagged a Rs 1,200-crore deal to set up a ammunition factory in Nalanda. It manufactures well-known small arms including the Uzi submachine gun, the Tavor assault rifle and the Desert Eagle revolver. In 2002, India signed a Rs 90-crore deal to procure over 3,000 Tavor rifles for its special forces from IMI.

Singapore Technologies: The Singapore-based firm manufacturers small arms and artillery systems, mainly for its parent country. The firm has a joint venture with OFB on small arms and the two have jointly developed a carbine, the SAR 21 MMS for sale to Indian defence and paramilitary forces. It was the frontrunner in a Rs 5,000-crore tender to provide 155 mm light howitzers for the Army.

T S Kishan and Co Pvt Ltd: A Delhi-based firm, it manufactures explosive shells for the 155 mm Bofors guns in service with the Army. It has a tie-up with OFB for manufacturing sub-components of the artillery ammunition.

R K Machine Tools: The Ludhiana-based company supplies critical components to the OFB including 120 mm shells and varieties of 155 mm ammunition and flares.

Media Architects Pvt Ltd: The Singapore-based firm specialises in new media technologies and is the distributor of several software packages.

HYT Engg: The Pune-based firm is also involved in manufacture of 155 mm components for the Army.

BVT, Poland.

The Ministry of Defence spokesperson Sitanshu Kar said that though the CBI has not yet filed a chargesheet, evidence such as transfer of money to personal accounts of government employees involving the companies have been detected.

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