The British rule came to an end in 1947. One of the legacies of the Raj was an armed force that was a carbon copy of the British. However during British rule no worthwhile arms industry was set up and after Independence the Indian Arms industry had to start from scratch.
Krishna Menon and Ordinance Factories
This state was changed to an extant courtesy Krishna Menon the controversial defense minister. For all his acts of omission and commission the establishment of the Ordinance factories in the public sector by him certainly deserves credit. A department of Defense production was also created andan ordinance board under the ministry of defense production constituted
At the beginning the Indian ordinance factories were not given much importance and some of then were also used to manufacture non military items like pressure cookers and coffee percolators. However the 1962 war with China changed all that and the ordinance were soon geared up to manufacture weapons and ammunition for the army. Presently nearly 50 ordinance factories are available to manufacture all types of ammunition shells as well as pistols and revolvers.
Manufacture Pistols and Revolvers
The manufacture of pistols and revolvers was given the green signal only in the early eighties. Initially these small arms were sold only to the armed forces personnel, but now their sale is permitted to Indian civilians who hold valid arms licenses. The procedure of getting these weapons is however still restricted. The weapons are not sold through the arms dealers but directly by the ordinance factories themselves.
The applicant is to forward a completed application with a copy of his arms license directly to the
The Indian ordinance factories manufacture a .32 bore and .38 bore revolvers as well as 9mm pistols. Out of these only the .32 bore revolver and pistol are for civil use. The price of both the pistol and revolver
Is roughly about 75,000 Indian rupees. ($1600)
The .32 caliber revolver is numbered as IOF MK 1. It is derived from the famous Webley Scott revolver. The Indian made revolver weighs 0 .70kg.The IOF also manufactures pistols. The FN Browning GP35 a 9mm pistol and a copy of the Pistol manufactured in Canada by John Inglis is marketed. These pistols are small and handy and available to all who have valid arms licenses. .The Glock17 another 9mm pistol is also manufactured..This pistol has some plastic components and is marketed only to the special forces of the Indian union like the special protection Group.
The pistols and revolvers manufactured by the IOF need improvement as far as quality is concerned. The look and finish is below par .This is the reason that these small arms have not found a ready market among other nations. A lot of effort will be needed to put these weapons on par with the small arms of the advanced countries