New Delhi: Asserting that India has embarked on the journey to achieve the goal of an inclusive and developed country, President Droupadi Murmu said on Friday that the indigenous industries have a huge role in building a self-reliant, competitive and robust economy.
She said the government has taken several policy initiatives in the last few years and brought in reforms to encourage indigenous design, development and manufacturing of defence equipment.
The president was addressing the officers of the Indian Ordnance Factories Service and probationers of the Indian Defence Accounts Service (IDAS), who had called on her at the Rashtrapati Bhavan here.
“India has embarked on the journey to achieve the goal of an inclusive and developed nation. You all know that the indigenous industries have a huge role in making a self-reliant, competitive and robust economy,” she said.
Campaigns and initiatives, such as “Atmanirbhar Bharat”, “Make in India”, “Startup India” and “National Skill Development Mission”, are some of the major programmes intended to serve this purpose, Murmu said.
Initiatives, such as according priority to procurement of capital items from domestic sources under the Defence Acquisition Procedure-2020, simplification of the industrial licensing process, liberalisation of the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy, launch of Mission DefSpace, launching the SRIJAN portal to facilitate indigenisation and establishment of two defence industrial corridors, are aimed at achieving self-reliance in the defence sector, she said.
Murmu said the officers will be the movers and facilitators of indigenisation in defence systems and would be expected to work towards enhancing the country’s defence-production capabilities.
“We know that India’s defence exports have risen from Rs 686 crore in FY 2013-14 to nearly Rs 16,000 crore in FY 2022-23. India’s defence exports have reached more than 85 countries and India’s defence industry has shown the world its capability in design and development,” she said.
Nearly 100 firms export defence products, the president pointed out, adding that India now exports a wide range of defence products, including aircraft like the Dornier-228, Brahmos missiles, PINAKA rockets and launchers, radars, simulators etc.
The global demand for India’s indigenous products, such as the LCA-Tejas, aircraft carriers, and MRO activities, is also increasing, she said.
“Dear young officers, it is imperative that while discharging your duties, you actively participate in the development programmes and facilitate the process of making India a defence-manufacturing hub,” Murmu said.
Addressing the IDAS officers, she said they will be playing a vital role in managing the financial aspects of the country’s armed forces.
“You will be responsible for ensuring efficient financial management and accountability within the defence sector. I am confident that with your professional integrity and based on your robust training modules, you will be able to promote financial prudence in defence forces and contribute significantly in nation building,” the president said.
Murmu urged them to adopt latest techniques and methods for auditing and accounting to bring in greater transparency and accountability in the functioning of defence systems.
She said the officers have joined their services at a time when the country is undergoing extensive transformation at local as well as global level.
“With the emergence of new technologies and with latest techniques and information spreading at a fast pace in every part of the world, your role in the making of a developed nation and making India globally competitive will become even more important. Your thoughts, decisions and actions will contribute in a big way in shaping the future of defence systems and the country,” the president said.