India is now in the stage of developing weapons according to its requirement. Now India is not the top importer of weapons but also exports weapons to the nations which required reliable and cost-effective weapons. There are many sectors which India is leading in the defence sector such as missiles, aeronautical, artillery, communication systems, and submarine manufacturing. But there is one sector India is lagging behind and i.e manufacturing. Manufacturing of good quality, cost-effective, and fast delivery of armaments is very important. Now the Government of India is serious and taking many steps to resolve this problem such as:
Manufacturing Through Public-Private Partnership (PPP)
In India, there are many private firms that are actively contributing to the development of many indigenous weapons. For example private company Dynamatic Technologies has completed the first front fuselage for the FOC version of the ‘Tejas’ and the fuselage is supplied to HAL for further development. India’s fifth-generation stealth fighter AMCA to be developed by the public-private partnership model. The joint venture company will be a three-way partnership between HAL, DRDO (via ADA), and an Indian private sector firm. Another example is the manufacturing of K-9 Vajra a modified version of the Samsung-Techwin. Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is the manufacturer of K-9 and this example proves the advantage of the PPP model the best for India as Larsen & Toubro (L&T) delivers the self-propelled howitzers ahead of Schedule. The government should promote this model to get good quality weapons and also fast delivery is insured.
Corporatization Of OFB
OFB is the primary supplier of armaments to the Indian Armed forces. Many times there are incidents that showcase the poor quality of armaments provided by the OFB. When M777 howitzer was procured from the USA during its trials the barrel busted and the faulty ammunition was provided by OFB. Many times during trials of artillery guns barrel busted is a common problem and again the faulty ammunition is provided by OFB. In the latest CAG report, it is mentioned that there is a Shortfall of production against targets out of 41 only a few subsidiaries manage to achieve the target allotted. But still, this is not positive because if somehow any subsidiary manages to achieve the target then there can be faulty ammunition manufactured.
The same incident is covered in the example Ordnance Factory, Badmal (OFBL) supplied 155mm ammunition in March 2009 and March 2010 to the Army by filling it with TNT mix. The army reported exudation of TNT mix explosives from the shells of ammunition within their shelf life. Finally, lack of availability of test provision for a set point of TNT mix led to a loss of Rs 62.10 crore on account of replacement of defective ammunition by the OFB.
Moving ahead with a longstanding proposal to corporatize the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) and its 41 factories dotted around the country, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced the appointment of private sector consultants that would advise the government on how to proceed. The department has selected KPMG Advisory Services Pvt Ltd.
In a decade India made significant progress in development and innovation in the defence sector. But only lag in the manufacturing sector and soon this problem will come to an end. There are many private players involved in many futures projects such as AMCA, LCA Tejas, development of submarines and warships, and many other weapons. India has the capability to develop any weapon and soon India will develop a Hypersonic missile and mark the entry in the elite club which has developed Hypersonic missile. The only thing government has to look after is the manufacturing sector and the rest of the things are eminent scientists can handle.