Clearing the way for selling artillery guns to India, the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency has notified the Congress of a possible foreign military sale (FMS) of light-weight howitzers, worth Rs 3,000 crore, to New Delhi.
India had requested the US for outright purchase of 145 M777 lightweight towed howitzers that can be swiftly deployed in the mountains.
Manufactured by BAE Systems, the M777 howitzer is in service with the US Army and US Marine Corps in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The howitzer would be deployed in the Northeast where the army is raising two mountain divisons and Jammu and Kashmir. A deal would be signed after Congressional approval, which would come in a month.
BAE Systems is lucky to be on the verge of winning the contract.
Earlier, Singapore Technologies had emerged as a strong contender for supplying its 155mm Pegasus lightweight howitzer to India. It was the only bidder for the contract last year, as BAE Systems had not responded to an earlier tender.