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First M777 ultra light artillery gun to reach India this weekend

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New Delhi, May 17, 2017: After three decades, the Indian Army will receive its first heavy ordnance as the first two guns out of the 145 M777 ultra light artillery guns it ordered from the US are expected to arrive, a month ahead of schedule, over this weekend, said a company statement.

A BAE Systems spokesman said in a statement that “In fulfilment of the United States’ Foreign Military Sale of 145 M777 ultra light weight howitzer to India, we are pleased to confirm that the first two weapon systems will land in India ahead of schedule over this weekend.”

“We continue to support the US government in integrating this new weapon system with the Indian Army’s artillery modernisation program,” he added.

The guns were expected to arrive in June.

On November 30, India signed the Letter of Agreement and Acceptance (LOA) with the US to purchase 145 M777 ultra-light artillery guns, through the foreign military sale (FMS) route.

The Union Cabinet on November 17 approved the much-awaited deal, which would add tremendous firepower to the Indian Army, especially against China in the eastern front.

The air portable 155mm/39 calibre gun, with a maximum range of 30 km, is manufactured by BAE Systems.

The $737 million contract has a 30 per cent offset clause worth around $200 million.

Out of 145 guns, BAE will deliver 25 guns and rest 120 will be assembled in India by Mahindra.

The ultra light howitzer is being purchased primarily to deploy on mountains in eastern border with China to provide the much-needed fire power to the Indian Army in the region.

The last artillery guns that India purchased were the much-controversial Swedish Bofors guns in the mid-1980s.

Wefornews Bureau

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Sukma: CRPF personnel killed in Naxal encounter

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Sukma, April 21: A Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel lost his life in an encounter with Naxals near Kistaram camp in insurgency-hit Sukma district of Chhattisgarh on late Friday.

The gunfight erupted when troops of 212 battalion of CRPF, 208 CoBRA, along with Chhattisgarh police were carrying out a cordon and search operation last night.

The deceased was a native of Madhya Pradesh.

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Raipur: 7-year-old sexually assaulted in school

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Chhattisgarh, April 21: In yet another case of crime against minors, a seven-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted at Raipur School.

Speaking to ANI, Victim’s father said “It was her first day to the school on Wednesday. She went to the school and we wanted to meet her at the school, but we weren’t allowed to do so. While changing her clothes after she returned from school, my wife noticed blood on her private parts and she was not wearing undergarments.”

On being asked if she had reported about the incident to the teacher, the minor replied that the teacher was absent on the second day of her school.

Meanwhile, the police said that they were investigating the matter and were examining CCTV footages of the school. An FIR was lodged for the same.

The president of Child Right Commission, Prabha Dubey, said “I have spoken to the girl personally. She is saying that a ‘bhaiya’ had allegedly molested her. We asked the peon of the school about the undergarment, to which she replied that she had thrown away the undergarment since the girl had urinated on it. I will constitute a team to investigate the matter.”

In the wake of recent Unnao, Surat Kathua rape cases, Indian social media has been abuzz with the words – “rape horror”.

Massive countrywide protests are being held demanding death penalty for those accused of raping minors.

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Accused in fake facebook post on Manohar Parrikar’s health, gets bail

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Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar (File Photo)

Panaji, April 20: A city Judicial Magistrate First Class(JMFC) court on Friday granted bail to Kenneth Silveira, who was arrested by Crime Branch of Goa for posting fake information about Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar’s “death” on Facebook.

He was released on a personal bond of ₹10,000, reported The Hindu.

In a related development, members of civil society staged a protest outside the Goa Police headquarters here on Friday morning condemning the arrest.

Kenneth, 35, was arrested by the Crime Branch on Wednesday, a day after he put up the post on social media, on a complaint by a BJP office-bearer.

Parrikar is undergoing treatment for advanced pancreatic cancer in the US.

On Friday, a few dozen protesters rallied at the police headquarters and accused police of trying to “muzzle” free speech.

The Opposition has also criticised the police for the arrest of Silveira, who contested the 2017 by-poll in Panaji but lost to Parrikar.

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