The Nagpur-based Economic Explosives Ltd (EEL) has manufactured around one lakh latest indigenous hand grenades on August 24 for the Indian Army. The Defense Ministry said in an official statement that “The first batch of Multi-Mode Hand Grenades (MMHG), manufactured by EEL following Transfer of Technology from Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory of Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), was handed over to the Indian Army in the presence of Rajnath Singh in Nagpur.”
This is the first instance of ammunition being manufactured by the private industry in India, the statement added. Since the previous month, EEL, a subsidiary entity of Solar Industries India Ltd, had started shipping the grenades to the armed forces.
The first consignment of 1 lakh MMHG had been tested satisfactorily for quality by users and delivered, the release said. Singh was handed over a scale replica of MMHG by the chairman of EEL SN Nuwal to mark the first delivery of ammunition from the private sector to the armed forces, the statement read.
Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane, Chairman of DRDO Dr G Satheesh Reddy and Infantry DG Lt Gen AK Samantra attended the event. EEL had signed a contract with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) on October 1, 2020, to supply 10 lakh modern hand grenades for use by the Army and the Indian Air Force (IAF), the release added.
The deliveries would be spread over two years from the bulk production clearance (BPC) which was accorded to EEL in March 2021, the note added. These newly built grenades will replace Grenade No 36 of World War I vintage design, which had been continuing in service till date, the ministry said, adding that MMHGs have a distinctive design that gives the “flexibility of employment in both defensives (fragmentation) and offensive (stun) modes”.
“They have highly accurate delay time, very high reliability in usage and are safe for carriage. These modern grenades were designed by Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory of DRDO,” the release stated.
Extensive trials of the grenades were successfully undertaken by the Indian Army and DGQA (Directorate General Of Quality Assurance) in 2017-18 in plains, deserts and high altitudes over summer and winter, the release mentioned. Against a General Staff Qualitative Requirement (GSQR) of 95 per cent reliability, the grenades manufactured by EEL had highly superior reliability of 99.8 per cent, it added. The success of the MMHG story is further amplified by its usage of 100 per cent indigenous content, the release further added.