Modernisation Means Better Security
BW conference on military modernisation sees India’s armed forces chiefs unveiling the country’s most interactive defence community site
The first BW Businessworld defence conference in association with Salute was held in New Delhi on 27 July. “A leader in the forces commands more respect than any other professional,” said Annurag Batra, Editor in Chief, BW Businessworld in his opening remark. “Today we are happy to roll out BW Defence. We are doing this to add to the defence preparedness of our forces, to analyse, understand and enable the world of defence in India, to increase awareness about India’s ever prospering ecosystem of defence and act as a motivator for a further development in the area”.
He also said that through BW Defence, he aimed to be a catalyst in India’s defence preparedness and to improve the lives of defence forces personnel. “This is a unique angle that we bring; to be an editorial platform between the defence forces and other stakeholders in the government, business, and public,” said Batra.
Unveiling the website BWDefence, ADC Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee and Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Sunil Lanba said: “It is indeed a matter of honour and privilege for me to deliver the inaugural address at this seminar on an issue of great national importance which has assumed centre-stage in our military capability discourse”. On the imminent plan for the modernisation, he said, “The defence industry must focus on two areas: one is in the intellectual domain which will create an eco-system and encourage original design and development and second, the industry, thereafter, would need to create a sustainable production base, which executes projects on time and within approved costs.
Sanjay Jaju, Joint Secretary, and Department of Defence Production, Ministry of Defence (MoD) highlighted the critical changes in the draft defence production policy 2018, which would encourage the greater participation of domestic industries and boost indigenization. He said, “If you look at the defence production policy, you would have realised that the major thrust is on modernising the requirements of our forces and allowing India to become a defence manufacturing hub.”
Speaking on the topic of ‘Buy For India, Make In India’, Rear Admiral Shekhar Mittal (Retd), CMD, Goa Shipyard said, “There are challenges and that is where the question of make and buy comes. It is obvious that instead of buying 100 percent from outside, we go for 60 percent local sourcing and progressively move towards 80 percent indigenisation. It will generate more employment opportunities.”
“We need to target the areas of manufacturing R&D for the Indian industry meet the requirements of the Indian Air Force. We need to build a culture of manufacture to precision, quality, because the essence of your quality is the fact that you are able to export,” said Air Marshal Sumit Mukherji.
Lt. Gen. P.J.S. Pannu emphased that the modernisation of the armed forces is most essential for the security of the country.
Gen. Bipin Rawat, Chief of the Army Staff, raised the fervour first by his presence and then by delivering an inspiring speech. ”National power is taken to be synonymous with economic power; any nation which wants to be economically strong cannot afford to have a weak military. Economics and military must go hand in hand,” said Rawat.