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Indian Army’s new sniper rifle paired with old improvisation tactics will turn tables at LoC

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The media has repeatedly said over the last few months that sniping is a new modus operandi at the Line of Control between India and Pakistan and the Army is losing this new war due to ageing equipment.

Out dated equipment is a concern, and therefore the Indian Army has just bought new deadly sniper rifles for the Northern Command – .50 Calibre M95 by Barrett and the .338 Lapua Magnum Scorpio TGT by Beretta – to replace the Russian Dragunov.

But contrary to media’s claims, sniping is not a new phenomenon, and is in fact a tried-and-tested way of achieving moral ascendancy along the Line of Control (LoC) and the Indian Army hasn’t fared poorly. Improvisation has largely made up for lack of adequate equipment.

Also read: Deadly new sniper rifles are here for Northern Command soldiers along LoC

The Soviet-era Dragunov sniper rifle has been the mainstay of the Indian Army in conventional operations along the LoC as well in counter-terror missions. However, the 800-metre effective range offered by the Dragunov is now insufficient for modern-day warfare.

Yet, the Indian Army through improvisation, correct training and selection has created an environment wherein sniping has become a force multiplier. The adversary too hasn’t been static on this front.

I recall on the first day of my command at Siachen in 1995, we lost an outstanding young officer, keeping vigil on his post from behind a four-feet wall, to a single shot fired by the enemy. Investigation showed that the shot was fired by a medium machine gun (MMG) from a range of 4,200........

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