In a bid to strengthen its capability to tackle terrorists trying to launch attacks inside its air bases like the Pathankot Airbase, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has inducted specialist vehicles that can withstand bullet and grenade attacks.
“The Light Bullet Proof Vehicles (LBPVs) have been inducted into the service and would be deployed at the airbases to be used during any terrorist attack to suppress them,” IAF officials told ANI here.
The six-tonne vehicle has been designed and developed in a way that its engine remains hidden from the front and rear side and cannot be targeted easily, they said.
The vehicle has been provided protection by equipping with 6 mm thick armoured protection and a 40 mm windshield, which can withstand AK-47 and sniper rifle bullets, the officials said.
#WATCH | Indian Air Force has inducted 6-tonne Light Bullet Proof Vehicles for enhancing its airbases' security. They can withstand any type of bullet & grenade attacks, & would help in countering any terrorist attack. They can carry 6 Garud commandos/Quick Reaction Team members. pic.twitter.com/KovJuVvI8Q
— ANI (@ANI) April 13, 2021
A canopy covered or protected by armour has also been provided which can allow the gunner to fire freely at its target.
The vehicle can be driven at high speeds up to 100 to 120 km and can also be run on flat tyres, the officials said.
It is fitted with H6 engine develops 108 HP, 5-speed gearbox, independent suspended axle, hydraulic system that provides for excellent mobility and maneuverability with four sides protected for STANAG Level 1 armored cab.
The vehicle has a maximum gross vehicle weight of 5,500kg (Max 8), of which maximum payload is 1,000kg.
The vehicles can accommodate six fully geared Garud commandos or Quick Reaction Team (QRT) members while the open space in the rear can have more men.
Four terrorists had intruded the Pathankot Airbase at night on the new year’s eve of 2015-16 and tried to attack the assets deployed there, including fighter aircraft and helicopter gunships.
The terrorists were killed and their mission was foiled but the incident suggested certain shortcomings in Air Force’s preparedness to tackle such attacks and manpower training for reacting to such assaults was undertaken at a large scale. (ANI)