To upgrade the manpower skills of the armed forces, the Indian Army is planning to induct training simulators in a big way.
In the plans being mooted, the army proposes to install simulators in all formations to ensure that troops do not have to go to the ranges for actual up gradation of skills in firing sophisticated equipment like 155mm guns, frontline T-90 tanks, armoured personnel carriers and short and medium range missiles.
The simulators being inducted, would be 90 per cent indigenous, with only a fraction being imported that too for specialised equipment like fire finding radars and usage of unmanned aerial vehicles, army sources have been quoted as saying.
A detailed presentation on the induction of simulators was made by the Master General of Ordnance Lt Gen VK Jaitley on the second day of the army commanders conference here.
Jaitley also gave a presentation on efforts to speed up induction of nuclear capable 700 KMS Agni I and its medium 1,500 kms range Agni II.
The Army recently has raised two more groups to arm them with these missiles. It so far had only two missile groups armed with shorter range 300kms surface to surface Prthvi missiles.
On the second day of the deliberations at the Conference the commanders also discussed human rights situation while carrying out anti-militancy operations with special focus on recent events in Manipur and the alleged fake encounters on the Siachen glacier.
Meanwhile a study by an independent watchdog says that in India, almost one-quarter of the over 540 people elected to Parliament this year face criminal charges ranging from murder to extortion and even rape.
An Indian daily 'The Indian Express', reports that Members of the Parliament (MPs) from almost all political parties are involved, but half of the parliamentarians from a powerful regional partner of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's coalition are tainted by such charges, which if proved, entail a minimum jail term of five years, the Bangalore-based Public Affairs Centre said.
The report is based on affidavits filed by politicians before they fought polls to the Lower House of Parliament under a new rule enforced by the Supreme Court to improve transparency and probity in public life.
"It is a shocking indictment of the system that one-fourth of our elected representatives to the highest democratic body have criminal cases against them," said Samuel Paul, chairman of the group which has been campaigning for cleaner politics.