Essential clothing items on life cycle concept are provided free of cost to the soldiers (JCOs & other ranks) only. These include uniforms, shoes, improved combat kit (ICK), mosquito nets, etc. However, items of extreme cold climate & equipment (ECC&E) and Special Clothing and Mountaineering Equipment (SCME) are issued to all ranks including officers when posted to areas with extreme cold climate conditions.
Procurement of these items and supply to the troops is ongoing process. Government has taken the following steps to ensure availability of essential clothing items:
• ECC&E & SCME items are procured through an Empowered Committee in Army headquarters with complete delegated powers. Requirements of three years are sourced in one procurement cycle.
• In case of SCME items, special dispensation for placing 100% repeat Orders has also been given to the Empowered Committees.
• Roll on indent for 05 years requirement is placed on Ordnance Factories.
• To facilitate Ordnance Factories to source raw material in advance, provision cycle of clothing items have been advanced by six months from current financial year.
This information was given by Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar in a written reply to Shri Anubhav Mohanty in Rajya Sabha today.