Prime minister Narendra Modi will dedicate Larsen & Toubro's howitzer gun manufacturing unit at Hazira in Surat on Saturday before ending his Gujarat visit, officials said.

L&T had won the Rs 4,500 crore contract to supply 100 units of K9 Vajra-T 155 mm / 52 calibre Tracked Self-Propelled gun systems to the Indian Army in 2017. The company has set up an Armoured Systems Complex at its Hazira facility, around 30 km from Surat, to manufacture the guns.

"Prime minister Narendra Modi will be dedicating the Armoured Systems Complex, which is the first such facility in the private sector in India, to the nation on the 19th," said a senior government official.

In July last year, L&T announced that it had entered into a contract with South Korea's Hanwha Techwin to jointly manufacture the guns. Of the 100 guns, the first ten would be made at L&T's plant in Talegaon near Pune, and the remaining 90 at the Hazira facility, said officials.

L&T is supposed to complete delivery of the 100 guns within 42 months.

The K9 Vajra-T is a variant of K9 Thunder, which is unarguably the world's best 155 mm / 52 calibre self-propelled howitzer in terms of a number of systems in active service. It has been modified for the Indian conditions to meet the army's requirements, including the desert operations. Capable of moving at speeds of over 60 km per hour, the Vajra is highly mobile. Being self-propelled, it can be used at different points on the battlefield, thus offering a tactical advantage.

According to a statement on L&T's website, the K9 Vajra offers deep fire support with its longer firing range, qualitative superiority to overcome numerical inferiority with its higher rate of fire and accuracy and effective and reliable fire support with its higher mobility and protection.