Indian Army Make Projects 2021 Webinar:  The Make Projects Have Been Instrumental in Enhancing the Role of MSMEs in the Defence Sector: Army Chief

Indian Army

New Delhi: A webinar on ‘Indian Army Make Projects’ was organised by the Indian Army in conjunction with FICCI organised on November 8, 2021. This was the sixth such webinar since the inception of the Make process in 2016.

Speaking on the occasion, the Chief of Army Staff, General MM Naravane, emphasised the Government’s initiative of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ and the resultant reforms initiated towards promoting self-reliance in the defence sector.

General Naravane said, “Developing indigenous and local capabilities to confront emerging security challenges and reduce our dependence on borrowed technologies is therefore an imperative need. I truly believe that during conflicts and war like situations, only the indigenously developed technologies will be available to us for full exploitation across diverse domains”.

He expressed confidence in the capability of Indian industry to meet the Army’s modernisation requirements indigenously and this was evident from the 36 Make-II projects that the Army was now progressing with the industry.

“The Indian Army is undergoing rapid modernisation and is increasingly looking at indigenous option. We are privileged to be the agents of this change that has the potential to redefine India as a global hub for manufacture of defence equipment,” he said.

He asserted that the Army is most suited to lead this initiative. “India has an expanding industrial base and we are confident that most of our core requirements of defence equipment can be realised in house. The Army Design Bureau has been the single window facilitation agency to closely interact with all stakeholders,” he said.

The Army Chief also highlighted that in the last one year despite the challenges of COVID, the Indian Army had made extraordinary progress. This had resulted in issue of 12 Project Sanction Orders and accordance of an equal number of AoNs. Very niche technologies were now under development within the country. The Make Projects have also been instrumental in enhancing the role of MSMEs in the defence sector with over 40% of the Project Sanction Orders issued to MSMEs and projects amounting to over 1,000 crores reserved for MSMEs.

Delivering the opening remarks, the Deputy Chief of Army Staff (Capability Development and Sustenance), Lt Gen Shantanu Dayal reiterated the Indian Army’s commitment towards ‘Make in India’ with design and development projects with the industry being undoubtedly the preferred mode of acquisition. Be it development of niche technologies or indigenisation of key equipment, the Make process afforded multiple advantages to both the Armed Forces as well as the industry.

Shri SP Shukla, Chairman, FICCI Defence and Aerospace Committee welcomed all the participants and appreciated the stellar role being played by Indian Army in partnering with the private industry in realizing indigenous solutions. Shri Sanjay Jaju, Additional Secretary, Department of Defence Production in his special address, highlighted the indigenisation priorities of the MoD.

During the webinar, the Indian Army unveiled Six new ‘Make-II Projects’. The new projects spanned technologies across unmanned systems, technologies to counter such systems as well as emerging solutions for augmenting air defence capabilities. Details of these projects were shared with the Indian Industry by the nodal officers and all queries of the industry on these new projects were deliberated in an interactive session. The Army would now work with the industry to evolve the development dimensions of each project.

A booklet on ‘Army Make Projects 2021’was released on the occasion giving out the current progress of ongoing projects, the new projects being launched along with allied information on the Make Process.