‘Can’t Depend On Other Countries For India’s Defence’: Rajnath Singh
(This article is originally posted by the Indian Express)
Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh Tuesday inaugurated Hindustan Aeronautics Limited’s (HAL) second LCA (Light Combat Aircraft) production line in Bengaluru.
Addressing the audience after the inauguration ceremony, the defence minister said the government will make every effort to ensure that HAL gets new orders. He further said that India cannot remain dependent on other countries for its defence requirements.
“Despite the COVID pandemic you have received Rs 48,000 crore order from the armed forces,” Rajnath Singh was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Terming it as the biggest procurement in terms of indigenous defence procurement, Singh said this will take the Indian aerospace sector to new heights. Singh also said that several counties have expressed interest in procuring indigenous Tejas M1A fighter aircraft. He also assured that HAL will receive orders from other countries very soon.
Describing the combat jet’s capabilities, Singh said Tejas is not only indigenous, but is also better than its foreign equivalents on several parameters including engine capacity, radar system, beyond visual range (missile), air-to-air refueling and maintenance, and is comparatively cheaper.
Singh arrived at the HAL Airport earlier today and will attend the Aero India show scheduled to be held from February 3 to 5 at the Yelahanka Air Force Station in Bengaluru.
Rajnath Singh also exuded confidence that in the next 3-4 years, India will achieve the target of Rs 1.75 lakh crores in the field of defence manufacturing.
His remarks come as the capital outlay for the armed forces was increased by nearly 19 per cent and a total of Rs 4.78 lakh crore was allocated for the defence Budget for 2021-22 as against Rs 4.71 lakh crore last year.