Antony asks DRDO and armed forces to work with greater synergy

for Ministry of Defence | Date - 03-06-2008

The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony has said the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the end user – the Armed Forces, have to work with greater synergy to achieve the goal of self-reliance and minimize our over-dependence on foreign nations. Speaking at the meeting of the Consultative Committee attached to his Ministry, here today, he said DRDO has a ‘crucial role in providing strategic defence with suitable delivery systems to the nation’.

Shri Antony complimented DRDO for taking a significant step towards developing ballistic missile defence when on 06 December 2007 an exo-atmospheric interceptor missile killed a hostile missile off the Orissa coast. He said, with this, India joined an elite club consisting of nations such as USA, Russia, China and Israel who possess this capability. Listing other achievements of DRDO, Shri Antony said it has also developed tactical systems such as missiles and radars, electronic warfare systems, SONARS, torpedoes, armaments, Light Combat Aircraft – Tejas, Unmanned aerial vehicle, aircraft upgradation programme, Main Battle Tank Arjun and BrahMos Missile.

Shri Antony said a country like India cannot go on depending on one country or the other for its defence requirements as we have had bitter experiences in the past. He said, nations are unwilling to part with strategic defence technologies, or at best willing to provide previous generation tactical systems and that too on unacceptable terms and conditions. In such a scenario, there is a strong need to optimize self-reliance in these areas.

The Defence Minister said, we are now entering a new era – an era in which we are not going to be ‘only a buyer’. ‘We have devised the policy of offset, the key element of which is transfer of technology. This will lead to a strong industrial base for the country’ he said.

Taking part in the discussion, the Members of Parliament, joined the Defence Minister in complimenting DRDO for their dedicated and exemplary service to the nation for the last fifty years. They also made a special mention of DRDO’s recent string of successes in missile technology. They, however, expressed concern at project delays and quality of some of the products developed by DRDO over the years.

Speaking on the occasion, the Scientific Advisor to Raksha Mantri Shri M Natarajan said development of strategic systems is being given highest priority by DRDO. The organisation is also developing cutting edge technology in partnership with Academia and Industry. A power point presentation, giving an impressive overview of DRDO and its activities, was made by Chief Controller of Research and Development Dr. VK Saraswat.

The Members of Parliament who attended today’s meeting included Shri Naveen Jindal, Shri MA Kharabela Swain, Smt Jayaben B Thakkar, Shri Samik Lahiri, Shri Shankhlal Majhi, Shri Braja Kishore Tripathy, Shri Madhu Goud Yaskhi, Shri Kailash Nath Singh Yadav, Prof Ram Gopal Yadav, Shri Shivaji Adhalrao Patil, Shri M Shivanna, Shri Syed Azees Pasha, Shri Dharam Pal Sabharwal, Shri Vinay Katiiyar, Shri PR Rajan and Shri RC Khuntia.

(Release ID :39356)

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