New Delhi, May 8
Backed by a policy that the importation of defense equipment would be an exception, the Indian Army is working closely with local industries for the acquisition of firearms, missiles, ammunition, small drones, swarm drones, counter-drone systems, tank engines and vehicles.
Locally manufactured INSAS rifles will be replaced by another indigenous product. Upgrading several Russian gear is handled locally. Bulletproof jackets and part of winter clothing are also no longer imported.
The Army is now considering technology transfer, joint ventures and R&D with private industry for indigenous innovations, design and development to significantly improve capabilities along active borders.
At a technology exhibition in Udhampur yesterday, Lieutenant General BS Raju, Deputy Chief of Army, met with industry representatives and assured that the army’s demands would be ‘reasonable’. More than 160 industries participated with products on display, including surveillance and situational awareness, tactical mobility, firepower, force protection, communications, combat medical facilities, robotics and simulators.
The message is clear, the army is committed to the “Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan”. The military has been given limited financial powers, which has already resulted in purchases worth around Rs 2,200 crore.
A number of indigenous design and development projects have been completed with exclusive ownership rights. Focus areas are multi-capability drones, UAVs, UAV counter drone systems with various capabilities, more accurate small arms, better protective gear, longer range artillery weapon systems and advanced, air defense systems covering the full range of the threat spectrum, more powerful and futuristic electronic warfare measures and better communication.
The Army has prioritized its procurement from local industry and runs many indigenization projects from the design and development phase through to final testing. Several efforts have been undertaken to strengthen autonomy in the defense sector.
On the way to autonomy
- The military is working with local industry to acquire weapons and ammunition
- Upgraded several locally managed Russian-origin equipment
- Bulletproof jackets and part of soldiers’ winter clothes are no longer imported
- Even the military’s limited financial powers resulted in purchases worth Rs 2,200 cr