Chennai: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday handed over the home made Arjun Main Battle Tank (MK-1A) to the Army in Chennai. At a function, he also accepted a salute by the state-of-the-art tank, indigenously designed, developed, and manufactured by DRDO’s Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment here. Fifteen academic institutions, eight labs and several MSMEs were also involved in the project.Also Read - Tamil Nadu Lifts Sunday lockdown, Ends Night Curfew As State Witnesses Marginal Dip In Covid Cases

Expressing his pride in handing over the tank, the prime minister said, “Tamil Nadu is already the leading automobile manufacturing hub of India. Now, I see Tamil Nadu evolving as the tank manufacturing hub of India.” Also Read - Chinese Army Hands Over Missing Arunachal Teen to India, Tweets Union Minister Kiren Rijiju

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“One of the two defence corridors is in Tamil Nadu. The corridor has already received investment commitment of Rs 8,100 crore. Today, I’m proud to dedicate to the country, one more warrior to protect our frontiers,” he further said.

Chennai Metro Rail Phase-I extension inaugurated

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday inaugurated the Chennai Metro Rail Phase-I extension and laid the foundation stone for several others in different sectors, including railways, in Tamil Nadu.

At a grand event at the Nehru Indoor Stadium here, he flagged off the 9.01 km service from Washermanpet to Wimco Nagar in North Chennai, completed at a cost of Rs 3,770 crore.

Modi dedicated to the nation the Chennai BeachAttipattu fourth line and the Railway electrification of Villupuram Cuddalore-Mayiladuturai Thanjavur-Mayiladuturai-Tiruvarur Single Line Sections.

Foundation stone for Discovery Campus of IIT Madras laid

He also laid the foundation stone for the Discovery Campus of IIT Madras, which will be built at nearby Thaiyur at an estimated cost of Rs 1,000 crore in the first phase over an area of 2 lakh sqm and the extension, renovation and modernisation of the Grand Anicut Canal System.

Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Chief Minister K Palaniswami, his deputy O Panneerselvam and other cabinet members, senior leaders of ruling AIADMK M Thambidurai, K P Munusamy and leaders from alliance parties participated in the event.

Heavy security, traffic diversions in place

The venue, the sprawling Nehru Stadium premises, and the entire Periamet neighbourhood in the heart of the city came under a three-layered security blanket.

Traffic diversions and heavy deployment of police personnel were made as part of security measures for the Prime Minister’s brief visit.

Several youngsters at the venue sported T-shirts hailing the chief minister and many from the audience raised slogans praising Modi and Palaniswami.

Earlier, the Prime Minister arrived at the airport here, and then flew in a chopper to INS Adyar from where he drove to the function venue.

All along the way, a good number of supporters and the public turned up to greet the Prime Minister as artistes played traditional musical instruments to welcome him.

Modi waved at the people who waited on the curb to have a glimpse of the leader.

At the event, Modi, Palaniswami and Panneerselvam paid floral tributes to the portraits of late chief ministers M G Ramachandran (AIADMK founder) and J Jayalalithaa.

(With inputs from agencies)