The state-owned Ordnance Factory Board’s most recent rifle submission has failed the Indian Army’s initial rifle qualification trials, in the words of the Hindustan Times it “miserably failed”. This most recent trial comes right on the heels of the failed “Excaliber” INSAS enhancement, and the MCIWS that hasn’t been able to achieve a successful adoption. From the Hindustan Times-
Official sources said there were “excessive number of faults” in the guns and “complete redesigning of the magazine” was needed to consider the guns to be used by the Army.
“Excessive flash and sound signature” were observed in the rifles during the trials, they said adding reliability aspect of the weapons needs comprehensive analysis.
The rifles had excessive number of faults and stoppages to the extent of more than twenty times the maximum permissible standards, the sources said.
The Army badly needs the assault rifles it is learnt to have been disappointed over delay in their procurement.
According to numerous hopeful sources before the trials, this new rifle was a hastily designed 7.62x51mm NATO prototype, using what appears to be a Kalashnikov action, with a forward, left-hand charging handle that pivots down when not in use, and magazines very similar to Galil magazines in appearance. The design was apparently drawn up, and brought to fruition within six months time, at the request of the Indian Army. It features a right side folding polymer stock, picatinny rail portions for optics mounted directly to the receiver cover, 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock portions on the handguards, in addition to iron sights, of which also have the rear sight mounted directly to the receiver cover. The receiver itself appears to be milled, and the cover looks to have been connected to the gas tube via a Krinkov swivel system. Selector positions are Safe, Semiautomatic, and Automatic fire, and is a Tantal-like ambidextrous switch on both sides of the receiver.