Acquiring Israeli-made state-of-the-art rifles and under barrel grenade launchers (UBGL) has given the armed forces a lethal edge in the fight against militants in Jammu and Kashmir. And the Army’s Special Forces in Kashmir are the first to get their hands on the weapons.
The Tavor Assault Rifle — 21 (TAR-21) and UBGL have lethal precision and accuracy. “It is a very accurate weapon which was inducted into my battalion a few months ago,” said colonel V Yadav, commanding officer of 10 Para (Special Forces).
The Israeli army has been using this weapon to fight insurgency. “It was after its success rate that we inducted the weapon system in our armoury,” said a senior officer.
TAR-21 rifles and UBGL have an effective range of 300-600 metres.
TAR-21 were used in a recent military operation in which the armed forces gunned down 13 militants who were hiding in the treacherous mountains in Bandipora-Kangan stretch in Chamarsar at an altitude of 14,000 feet.
“The rifle is made of fiber and is light in weight. Its laser beam-guided aim enables one to hit the target with precision. This is also used to target those militants who might have vintage positions,” said an army officer.
“Like other weapons in our armoury, the rifle is ferociously accurate and has a caliber of 5.56. Some of the rifles have a UBGL attached which is another good feature of this weapons,” added Yadav.
Earlier, troops in the counter insurgency grid relied on the traditional AK assault rifles, self-loading rifles and Insas rifles besides mortars and other weapons to take on militants who were equipped with sophisticated weapon system.
But now with the induction of the Israeli weapons, the Army feels well-equipped to take on the militants. “Militants are present but their ability to interfere with the normal life has been reduced by our efforts,” said major general VVS Goudar, general officer commanding of Kilo Force.