New Delhi [India], Aug 27 (ANI): India has the capability, capacity and the government's push in the right direction, it should seek to become self-efficient and become a net exporter of defence equipment, said Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Bipin Rawat, on Thursday.
The CDS along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh among others took part in the Defence Industry Outreach Webinar organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Defence Ministry.
"We have the capability, capacity, and will to produce high-end indigenous weapon systems. With the government's push in the right direction and vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat being promulgated, this is time to see this opportunity to achieve self-efficiency and becoming a net exporter of defence equipment," Rawat said.
The CDS said that as India grows in stature, the security challenges are bound to "increase exponentially" and the country has been dependent on foreign military equipment and weapons for long. However, in the last few years, the government has tried to reverse this trend, as per Rawat, by "boosting indigenisation and focusing on in-house research and development on dual-purpose high-end technologies."
"To emerge as a global power, it is imperative that India must invest in building long-term indigenous capabilities or applications of decisive military power. The unequivocal assurance of our commitment to procuring indigenous equipment and weapon systems will remain with the industry and all those who support them," Rawat said.
He further said that at times the Indian Armed Forces are somehow incorrectly perceived to have an import bias, while in reality the combined size of the armed forces, the huge inventory, the technology spread of the equipment and the need for its constant upkeep and maintenance provides a viable market for the Indian industries.
"We will reexamine defence requirements and prioritise those with indigenous research and development. Work towards corporatisation of Ordnance factories for a more efficient interface and integrate them into the layered defence ecosystem," Rawat said.
"Nothing will give us greater satisfaction than fighting and coming out victorious in a war with indigenous developed technology and equipment," he added.
Singh and CDS Rawat, along with other officials, also released a booklet Department of Military Affairs which encapsulates entire policy space related to 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' on defence during the webinar. (ANI)