- The government has taken a number of steps in recent years to strengthen domestic defence manufacture.
- The government has resolved to boost indigenous defence manufacture in order to lessen reliance on imported military platforms.
The government approved the procurement of military equipment and platforms worth Rs 76,390 crore from domestic businesses on Monday, a key step toward increasing India’s defence industry self-reliance.
According to the defence ministry, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, approved the purchase of next-generation corvettes (NGCs), the manufacture of Dornier aircraft and Su-30 MKI aero-engines, wheeled armoured fighting vehicles, and weapon-locating radars, among other things.
The DAC approved the procurement of NGCs for the Indian Navy at a cost of roughly Rs 36,000 crore, according to the ministry.
Surveillance missions, escort operations, deterrent, Surface Action Group (SAG) operations, search and assault, and coastal defence are just some of the duties that the NGCs will play.
The NGCs, according to the ministry, will help India’s SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region) initiative.
The NGCs would be built based on a novel in-house design by the Indian Navy, employing cutting-edge shipbuilding technology, according to a statement from the ministry.
The DAC also authorised a proposal by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to produce Dornier aircraft and Su-30 MKI aero-engines, with a focus on increasing indigenisation.
“The DAC granted AoNs (acceptance of necessity) to the Navratna CPSE M/s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited for the manufacturing of Dornier Aircraft and Su-30 MKI aero-engines with an emphasis on boosting indigenization, notably in indigenizing aero-engine material,” the ministry stated.
The AoN is required for the purchase of any military equipment.
“For the Indian Army, the DAC has issued new AoNs for procurement of Rough Terrain Fork Lift Trucks (RTFLTs), Bridge Laying Tanks (BLTs), Wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicles (Wh AFVs) with Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs), and Weapon Locating Radars (WLRs) from domestic sources, with an emphasis on indigenous design and development,” the ministry said.
The “Digital Coast Guard” initiative was also approved by the DAC.
“The DAC has authorised the ‘Digital Coast Guard’ project under the ‘Buy’ (Indian) category in accordance with the government’s objective for digital transformation in defence,” the ministry stated.
“Under this project, the Coast Guard would develop a pan-India secure network for digitising various surface and aviation operations, logistics, finance, and HR activities,” it added.
The government has taken a number of steps in recent years to strengthen domestic defence manufacture. The government announced in May 2020 that the automatic route for foreign direct investment (FDI) in the defence sector will be increased from 49 percent to 74 percent.
India is one of the world’s top weaponry importers. The Indian armed services are expected to spend over USD 130 billion on capital acquisition over the next five years, according to projections.
The government has resolved to boost indigenous defence manufacture in order to lessen reliance on imported military platforms.