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Tatra trucks expected to make a comeback

Tatra trucks, over which there was a controversy, are likely to make a comeback into the Indian armed forces as the government is now planning to procure the vehicles directly from the company manufacturing them instead of buying through agent firms.

One of the agent companies selling the Tatra trucks to the Indian Army had come under cloud after former Army chief Gen V K Singh alleged that he was offered a Rs 14-crore bribe to clear a file related to the procurement of these vehicles, prompting the government to order a CBI probe into the issue.

The validity of a pact between Bangalore-based PSU BEML and UK-based Tatra Sipox got over on 17 December. Now, the Defence Ministry is planning to procure the trucks from the original equipment manufacturer Tatra Truck Company in the Czech Republic, official sources told a news agency.

As per the plans, the trucks would be procured by BEML from the Czech manufacturer, they said.
The sources said India had also held parleys with the company to buy it out for meeting the requirements of its armed forces but the manufacturer refused to sell it.

Due to a hold on procurement of Tatra trucks from the UK-based company, the maintenance of the fleet of over 6,500 such trucks in India was getting adversely affected due to lack of spares and other parts.
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