Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today said the proposed Rs 20,000-crore defence industrial corridor in Uttar Pradesh will boost preparedness of the armed forces and leverage the existing ordnance factories and PSU establishments in the state.
Addressing reporters on the sidelines of the UP Investors Summit 2018 here, Sitharaman said Indian soldiers deployed at the borders "do not get appropriate" arms and ammunition in time or they get "faulty arms", affecting their preparedness.
When the defence corridor begins operation, she said, it will cut the transportation time lost in importing them and boost the preparedness of the defence forces.
"We can test them (here), and supply them," she said.
The defence minister cited the example of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), which manufactures aircraft. She said the HAL need not manufacture "small nuts and engines" as they are a Tier-1 company.
"They (should) take accessories used in manufacturing an aeroplane from different companies and assemble parts using higher-end technology," she said.
"Tier-1 companies are already in the state. In Kanpur, there are six ordnance factory units, which you can treat as comparable with HAL, but they are not in a position to do so," she said.
She said the government will "revive and activate" these units. "They will outsource more, so that private industrial units could take orders from them. In other words, there is an eco-system, but virtually negligible. These units are physically present, but not active," she said.
Asked whether there's a plan to revive the ordnance factories, Sitharaman said: "The larger interest is revival of all (the factories)." "Our team will go to each city, call smaller industrial units and brief them about the defence requirements. Based on those, it will ask them what could be manufactured by them. Our team will tell the units about the quality and also help them in getting the required technology," she said.
The ministry of defence will take steps to promote private investments, set up infrastructure for blast testing of arms and ammunition in the proposed corridor, she added.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)