Project F- INSAS is all about the modernization programme for infantry soldiers of the Indian Army. Project F-INSAS stands for Project – Future Infantry Soldier As A System.
Infantry Soldier has been a part of the battlefield from the very beginning. The evolutions in the warfare has led to the many changes but the importance and role of the soldier on foot has remained constant rather increased day by day. In all operational scenarios, the modern day infantry soldiers continues to play the vital role under different terrains and other varying geographical conditions. That is why it becomes important to increase operational capabilites of an infantry soldier & there modernization programme for infantry soldier fits in.
Derived from United States’ Future Warrior System, India started Project F-INSAS in 2005. It started with the vision to modernize all the Indian Infantry Units by 2020. Then In 2015, the Indian Army divided the project into two phases probably because of budgetary convenience.
Phase 1 : To equip the infantry soldier with best available assault rifle, carbines and other personal equipment like Bullet Proof Jackets, Helmets, etc.
Phase 2 : Battlefield Management System. (BMS).
Enhancing the operational capabilities of an infantry soldier. Operational capabilities in terms of lethality, situational awareness, mobility, survivability and of improved communications.
Equipment included in Project F-INSAS :
Initially, Multi-Caliber Individual Weapon System (5.56/ 7.62/ 6.8) was included in the program which was supposed to be replaced with the currently used INSAS rifle. But later 2017, Army set aside with these rifles and In 2019 procured SIG716 Rifles from the US. Along with that Army is going to have AK 203 rifles also.
Fire Proof, Level 4, advanced and light weight helmet that can stop 9mm bullet even from point blank range.
3. Visor: it can provide
- Flash light
- Thermal Sensors
- Night Vision Devices (NVDs)
- Digital Compass
- CRBN Sensors (Chemical, Rediological, Biological, Nuclear)
- Audio Headset
- Head Up Display
4. Uniform: Lighter, combat friendly clothes which provide comfort in particular combat environment.
Nowadays Indian army has been considering the changes required in combat uniform along the line of project F-INSAS.
5. Bullet Proof Jackets: Level 4 B.P. Jackets, lightweight with fireproof and waterproof capability.
6. Other Accessories like IRNSS Device, Mine Detection Device, various other radar devices, jammers, sensors, thermal imager, etc. are included in the project.
As you must have observed the project F-INSAS seems to be so ambitious. But it is the necessity of time when warfare is been evolving rapidly. Although, its already 2020, and we may not see all the infantry battalions of the Indian Army fully equipped as by the end of this year. However the project has been the required milestone in the history of Indian Infantry Modernization.
The completion of project F-INSAS may delay but its always better to delay than never. One may notice that our Infantry Forces are being taken care of in terms of modernization. They are getting better equipment, lightweight with better durability, and with better accuracy. Despite many challenges, the project is taking shape and hopefully completed soon.