New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday addressed the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Defence Industry Outreach Webinar’ to promote indigenous manufacture and development of defence weapons and permitted up to 74 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) in the defence manufacturing sector through automatic route.Also Read - PM Modi Clocks 20 Meetings in His 65-hour Stay in US
“We aim to increase defence manufacturing in India,” the prime minister said in his address. Also Read - Breaking News LIVE Updates Sep 27, 2021: Hyderabad's Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Postpones Exams Amid Heavy Rains Alert
“For many years, India has been one of the biggest defence importers. When India got its independence, it had great capability in defence manufacturing and an ecosystem of defence manufacturing established over 100 yrs. Unfortunately, this subject couldn’t get requisite attention,” PM Modi pointed out. Also Read - Assam Siblings Write to PM Modi and CM Himanta to 'Take Necessary Action' as Their Adult Teeth Weren't Growing and They Had Trouble Chewing Food
Noting the efforts towards the country’s defence production in developing new technology to give a big role to the private players in the sector, he said that the import embargo on certain defence equipment was aimed at giving a boost to the Indian defence industry.
“Our resolve for ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ is not inward-looking, but for making India capable and boosting global peace & economy,” PM Modi said.
Meanwhile, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said that the government aims to become self-reliant to contribute to the world in a better way.
“We want to become self-reliant to contribute to the world in a better way. In this direction, some bold policy reforms have been taken like the ban on import of 101 defence items,” Singh said at the webinar.
“I am confident that through our collaborative and cooperative efforts, we will not only achieve ‘Make in India’ but also ‘Make for World’,” he added.
Earlier, Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat said that India’s armed forces were committed to hand-hold the domestic industry in developing next-generation military platforms and equipment to make the country self-reliant in the defence sector.
“Nothing will give us greater satisfaction than fighting and coming out victorious in wars with indigenous technology and equipment,” he said at the webinar.
The Union government has already outlined its broad roadmap to make India a hub of defence manufacturing and has been taking policy initiatives to promote the domestic defence industry.
Efforts began on August 9 when Rajnath Singh announced that India will stop the import of 101 weapons and military platforms like transport aircraft, light combat helicopters, conventional submarines, cruise missiles and sonar systems by 2024.
In a related development, the DRDO on Monday identified 108 military systems and subsystems like navigation radars, tank transporters and missile canisters for the domestic industry to design, develop and manufacture.
The premier organisation said it will also provide support to industries for design, development and testing of these systems on a requirement basis.