India, Russia begin manufacturing of AK-203 assault rifles in U.P.’s Amethi

The joint venture between India and Russia, Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL), has started producing AK-203 Kalashnikov assault rifles at Korwa in Uttar Pradesh, according to Alexander Mikheev, Director-General of Rosoboronexport of Russia. Last week, Army chief Gen. Manoj Pande said that the first batch of 5,000 rifles would be delivered to the Army by March.

“Korwa Ordnance Factory in Amethi has produced the first batch of 7.62 mm Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifles. The beginning of deliveries to the Indian Army is expected soon,” Mr. Mikheev said in a statement on Tuesday.

At the same time, the factory’s capacity makes it possible to fully equip the personnel of other law enforcement agencies in India with AK-203 assault rifles, which, due to their high adaptability, are suitable for various operators, he stated, adding that in addition, the joint venture will be able to export to third countries.

Gen. Pande said that the contract for over six lakh AK-203 rifles would be executed by the joint venture over a period of 128 months or close to 10 years.

“Out of this, 70,000 is to come up in a matter of 32 months wherein the indigenous content is required to be in the range of 5% to 70%. Subsequently, we will have completely indigenous AK-203,” he stated.