Our country is gearing up to become chopper manufacturing HUB .Even in past, in a major boost to strategic ties, India and Russia decided to expand cooperation across various sectors as they signed 16 pacts, including deals on joint manufacture of 226 military helicopters and construction of 12 atomic plants with involvement of local companies in India. Recently during our PM’s visit to Moscow, India and Russia took forward a project to jointly manufacture military choppers under the ‘Make in India’ initiative even as other plans, including one to construct frigates. Russia is one of India’s oldest and most trusted defence partners. Today up to 70 per cent of India’s navy and up to 80 per cent of the nation’s air force is of Russian-made. India’s increasing industrial strength has now prompted it to pursue this deal.
It would be nice to further accelerate our partnership with one of the world’s fastest growing economies. India needs large number of helicopters both for military and civilian purposes. Ka-226T Helicopter is good for Indian Air force. India has the capacity and strength to become a manufacturing hub. It must emerge as the best destination for manufacturing in the world. We have the reputation of the largest importer of defence equipment. Our PM Modi has said that India needs to increase defence preparedness as it has huge requirements to manage internal security. It is to be remembered that to improve the acquisition and approval process we need to ensure that our technology does not fall into the wrong hands. If India’s defence industry becomes strong it will boost country’s security and will, add 200,000 skilled personnel in 10 years.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)