Tuesday, May 24, 2022
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India will no longer buy 101 types of military equipment from abroad, will move towards self-reliance.

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Taking a step towards achieving self-reliance in arms production, India has released a list of 101 weapons that will not be imported from abroad. This is the third such list. Earlier in 2020 and 2021, the import of 209 weapons was banned by issuing two negative weapons import lists. Announcing the third list, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said it would give impetus to the production and development of military systems, weapons, technology and ammunition in the country. Reduce reliance on foreign weapons and systems whose security is at risk of breaches.

The third list released by the government includes light tanks, fitted artillery guns, navy utility helicopters, certain types of drones, medium-range anti-ship and anti-radiation missiles. There are also next generation coastal patrol vehicles, anti-drone systems for the Navy, MF-STAR warship radar, advanced light torpedoes and some rockets. Their import has been banned from December 2022 to December 2027.

Referring to US-imposed sanctions on Chinese electronics company Huawei, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said that most of today’s weapons are electronic, operated by software. In such a situation, there is a risk of them being hacked. No matter how much these weapon systems claim to be foolproof, the risk of security breaches is always there. In earlier times tanks, howitzers, cannons and even helicopters were mechanical, whose systems could not be manipulated remotely. But now the technology has changed. In today’s world, weapons can be controlled even remotely. In such a situation, we try to make more and more weapons and weapon systems to ensure their safety in the country.

According to a report, Defense Ministry officials say that work is underway to develop several weapons and systems in the third negative import list. In the next 5 years, many of these will be able to be deployed. DRDO is working with government defense companies, ordnance factories and some private companies on this. Since the announcement of the first negative import list in 2020, the government has struck deals worth Rs 54,000 crore for the purchase of indigenous weapons. This is expected to increase to Rs 4.5 lakh crore in the next 5-7 years.

Although India has reduced arms purchases from abroad over the years, it is still the world’s largest arms importer. India buys 11% of the world’s weapons. The central government has set a target to reduce arms purchases in India from $20 million to $10 million by 2025. Along with this, a target of defense exports of $ 5 billion has been set.

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