Mini armored vehicles, powered by batteries and capable of going into hotel lobbies and congested urban areas have been developed by India’s Defence Research And Development Organization (DRDO). Three fully equipped commandos can be seated in the three-ton vehicles which can manoeuvre noiselessly through tight closed spaces such as lobbies of hotels, office and apartment buildings, airport terminals and train stations besides hide-outs of terrorists. They can be taken into tight urban roads which are barely wider than sidewalks and very common in parts of Asia. According to information contained in the DRDO’s newsletter, the aftermath of 26 11, when Pakistani terrorists had caused mayhem in Mumbai, dictated the need for an agile, compact, highly manoeuvrable armoured envelope adequately protected to carry two to three persons in hostile environment especially in buildings, small gullies, constrained spaces of hide outs, etc. DRDO’s Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (VRDE), Ahmednagar, has developed wheeled, tracked and low noise electric anti-terrorist vehicles (ATVs) to meet these varied needs of anti terrorist operations.
Each vehicle provides an all round protection from small arms and hand grenades. The vehicles can be easily deployed in the corridors of hotels and hostile terrains where it is difficult to operate in a normal wheeled vehicle. The vehicles have a very low turning radius and can turn around within a limited space. The tracked version of ATV has been ballistically tested by Central Reserve Police Force at Dausa, Rajasthan and has also undergone a successful grenade trial at Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory (TBRL), Chandigarh.