Death of twelve CRPF personnel in an ambush in Chattisgarh last month has raised questions on the lack of use of Mine Protected Vehicles (MPVs) in life threatening terrains.
According to Ministry of Home Affair's report security forces operate in dangerous zones of Jammu and Kashmir, Left wing Extremist areas and north-east with hardly less than half of the approved strength of these vehicles.
Naxals often use IEDs to counter the might of paramilitary forces. In 2016, 31 security personnel lost their lives, in comparison to 13 personnel in 2017 so far. Terrorist in Kashmir have also used ambush on security forces.
The MPV's have proven to lessen the impact of a mine or an IED, but data suggests that men in uniform often put their lives at risk without these vehicles.
As per the modernisation plan, CRPF has sanctioned 668 MPVs, BSF 224 MPVs, Assam Rifles 92 MPVs and ITBP 40 MPVs but in reality only 126 MPVs, 24 MPVs, 28 MPVs and 20 MPVs respectively have been provided.
The vehicles are sourced from Vehicle Factory Jabalpur (Ordinance factory board), but even the demand and supply has a huge deficit. According to MHA the sanctioned strength which includes latest procurement demand, 40 MPV are procured for CRPF, 12 each for BSF and ITBP and 7 for SSB.
According to NSG National Bomb Data Centre, a total of 406 blast incidents with maximum 337 Improvised Explosive Devices and 69 explosive ordinance have taken place in India in 2016 killing 112 and leaving 479 injured.