The Indian defence sector is at the doorstep of a new decade — transformed, confident and resilient— and I foresee it achieving new milestones in its journey to attain self-reliance.
The last quarter of 2019 and the early weeks of 2020 saw some action-packed developments in the Indian defence industry with many progressive, focussed and adaptive reforms taking shape to meet the uncertain challenges of the future. There were high decibel attempts to break the glass ceiling by activating policy reforms with crystal ball gaze into the future and bringing in various measures to achieve operational excellence.
At the moment, it seems that after decades of long gestation, inertia and policy paralysis, the Indian defence industry is at the realm of finding its mojo. Optimism aside, the focus and intent of both government and the defence industry should be to keep the momentum going. Amidst the multiple asymmetric challenges on the socio-economic and geo-political front, the government should explore navigating through it with a combo approach of innovation, co-partnership and co-development.
Taking cue from the positive vibes generated in recent times and Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of constructive programme based on bottom-up growth model, India should tap its fireflies (talent pool, innovators and entrepreneurs’), nurture them and enable them to rise in cohesion to transform the current uncertainty into a vibrant success story. Hope the Indian policy makers and other stakeholders in the defence ecosystem have already realised this and are all prepared to implement it at the earliest as India embarks on its journey to achieve the strategic autonomy goal through self-reliance in defence manufacturing.
It’s a reality that in the near future, no substantial increase in defence budget is going to happen. The armed forces and the industry will have to delve deeper in unison to bring out the best result from the limited and constrained budget allocation.
Raksha Anirveda extends its best wishes to the organisers of DefExpo 2020 @ Lucknow (11th edition and the biggest ever in India) and participants for a grand success. It will definitely setup the new narrative for Indian defence industry to emerge strongly on the global arena.
I hope that the eighth edition of Raksha Anirveda (DefExpo special) resonates well with the readers and meets their expectations. The team takes a big bow to express its gratitude to all who believed in us and have been a part of its journey that took shape two years back, as mentor and guiding lights. I invite and welcome all those who haven’t been on-board till date..
Ajit Kumar Thakur
Editor & Business Director