Rifle Factory Ishapore

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Rifle Factory Ishapore
Industry Defence
Headquarters Ishapore, India
Key people
General Manager D.K.Mahapatra
Parent Ordnance Factories Board
Website Official Website

The Rifle Factory Ishapore (also known as Ishapore Arsenal) is an arms manufacturing unit located at Ishapore, in the Barrackpore subdivision of the state of West Bengal in India.


The first arms manufacturing facility on the site was a gunpowder factory, which was started in 1787 and began production in 1791, whilst a gun & carriage manufacturing facility was set up nearby in 1801.

In 1904, a rifle factory was established at Ishapore, and began production of the Lee–Enfield rifle, which has continued- more or less- until the mid-1980s, and possibly the present. The factory also manufactured the Vickers-Berthier (VB) light machine gun, which was adopted in 1932 by the Indian Army and still remains in reserve use.[1]

Military rifles manufactured at Ishapore 1949 and pre-1949 are stamped "GRI" on the buttsocket, referring to George Rex, Imperator (i.e. King George VI, last Emperor of India), whilst military rifles manufactured 1949 and post-1948 are stamped "RFI", which stands for Rifle Factory, Ishapore.

The .303 British calibre Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk III, the 7.62×51mm NATO calibre Ishapore 2A1 rifle, and the 7.62mm NATO L1A1 Self-Loading Rifle were manufactured at the factory, and it now manufactures the 5.56mm INSAS rifle assault rifle for the Indian Army, Kalantak rifle, Ghatak rifle (7.62×39mm AKM-style assault rifle)[2][3] as well as numerous other weapons like Pistol Auto 9mm 1A, .22 revolver and .315, .30-06, .22 sporting rifles[4] both for military and civilian markets.

The Ishapore Rifle Factory is controlled by the Ordnance Factories Organization of India. The organization and the Ordnance Factory Board are notoriously secretive regarding production figures for military rifles, making the exact number of rifles produced at the arsenal almost impossible to determine.


  1. ^ Bishop, Chris The Encyclopaedia of Weapons of World War II page 245 (Amber Books, London, 1998) ISBN 978-1-905704-46-0
  2. ^ "OFB develops new rifle for army in quick time | Nagpur News - Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. 2017-03-23. Retrieved 2018-04-15.
  3. ^ "Rifle Factory Ishapore to display Ghatak Assault Rifle during Ordnance Factories Day celebrations | Kolkata News - Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. 2015-03-17. Retrieved 2018-04-15.
  4. ^ "Rifle factory celebrates 106 years of glory | Kolkata News - Times of India". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. 2009-09-27. Retrieved 2018-04-15.

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