The police of the Maoist insurgency-affected state of Jharkhand took delivery, on Thursday, of the first of six contracted Mine Protected Vehicles (MPV) manufactured by Defense Land Systems India (DSLI), a joint venture between Mahindra and Mahindra and international armaments manufacturer, BAE Systems.
Additional Director General of the Jharkhand Police B.B. Pradhan took the keys to the first vehicle from Brigadier Khutub Hai, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of DLSI.
Hai called the delivery a ‘proud moment for DLSI’. “(T)his is the first such vehicle of its kind indigenously manufactured by the private sector industry being delivered to the Police Forces in the country,” he said.
His company is training drivers and mechanics of the Jharkhand Police force to ensure optimum use of the vehicle. DLSI says it will also ‘provide complete lifecycle support to the Police for these vehicles’.
Describing the MPV-I as combining ‘Ballistic and Blast Protection capabilities’, Brigadier Hai said, “Built on Ural Chassis, it incorporates a ‘V’ shaped mono hull chassis which directs the force of the blast away from the occupants.” The MPV-I has been built with technology transferred from BAE Systems in South Africa.
Hai said the 6×6 vehicle has a powerful engine and high mobility and can carry an entire operational team making it ‘ideally suited for anti-terrorist and anti-Naxal operations’. The company has test run the vehicle and displayed its performance to the police forces of all states affected by the Maoist-Naxal insurgency.
DLSI said in a statement it has commenced serial production of the MPV-I at its factory at Prithla, near Faridabad, which has a present installed capacity of 100 vehicles per annum.