Zorawar Light Battle Tank: DRDO Begins Testing for Ladakh Deployment Against China

New Delhi: The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has commenced testing its new light battle tank, Zorawar, at the Larsen & Toubro (L&T) plant in Hajira, Gujarat, starting Saturday.

Developed in partnership with L&T, the Zorawar tank is designed specifically for the Indian Army’s strategic needs in the eastern Ladakh sector amid the ongoing border tensions with China along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

Remarkably, the tank was developed in just two years, setting a new benchmark for rapid defense technology advancements.

DRDO Chief Dr. Samir V. Kamat visited the Hajira facility to review the project’s progress. The Zorawar tank integrates advanced UAVs and loitering munitions technologies in response to insights gained from the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Named after the 19th-century Dogra General Zorawar Singh, renowned for his military campaigns in Ladakh and Western Tibet, the Zorawar weighs 25 tonnes and is the first tank designed and readied for trials in such a brief timeframe.

The initial plan involves supplying 59 tanks to the Indian Army, with a subsequent major production run of 295 additional units. Due to its light weight, the Zorawar can be transported by C-17 aircraft, and its design supports high-speed operations in challenging mountain terrains.

The ongoing trials are expected to conclude within the next 12 to 18 months, after which the tank will be prepared for official induction. While the first batch of ammunition will be imported from Belgium, DRDO is also working on developing indigenous ammunition for future requirements.

Featuring amphibious capabilities, the Zorawar is adept at navigating steep climbs and crossing rivers, offering improved mobility compared to heavier tanks like the T-72 and T-90.

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