While celebrating the ‘Aatmanirbhar Week’ in the Ministry of Defence (MoD), Defence Minister Rajnath Singh launched Department of Defence Production, MoD’s portal SRIJAN, which is a one-stop shop online portal that provides access to the vendors to take up items that can be taken up for indigenisation.
Four contracts of Defence India Start-up Challenge under Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) and four Mousy between industry partners and defence PSUs were also signed in the presence of the Defence Minister. A number of Expressions of Interest (EOI) and Requests for Proposal (RFPs) were also issued.
Speaking on the occasion, Rajnath Singh said signing of these MoUs and contracts will lead us to self-reliance in the technologies related to defence manufacturing. He called upon the Indian industry partners to show complete commitment and take proactive participation in the pursuit of indigenization and self-reliance in the defence sector. He said, “Self-reliance in defence manufacturing has been envisioned not only as a domestic requirement but also with export perspective and can be made possible with concerted efforts. With these things in mind, the government has taken important steps like corporatization of entities, reforms in FDI limits and recently released negative list of imports.”
He also mentioned,” Till sometime back, for our defence procurèrent, we have been looking towards the best technologies available in the world. But now our outlook has changed. We are thinking on how to manufacture the latest equipment ourselves or through joint ventures or transfer-oftechnology.”Commending DDP for creating SRIJAN portal, Rajnath Singh said this will help industry partners to play an active role in the goal of self-reliance in the defence sector.
Pursuant to Aatmanirbhar Bharat announcement, Department of Defence Production, MoD has developed an indigenization portal (srijandefence.gov.in), as opportunities for Make in India in defence, which will give information on items that can be taken up for indigenization by the private sector. On this portal, DPSUs/ OFB/SHQs can display their items which they have been importing or are going to import which the Indian industry can design, develop and manufacture as per their capability or through joint venture with OEMs. The Indian industry will be able to show its interest. The concerned DPSUs/OFB/SHQs, based on their requirement of the items and their guidelines & procedures will interact with the Indian industry for indigenization. The portal displays information in a structured way, which includes the item name, image and specification, values of imports, NATO Classification (indicative), etc. It also has a search facility.
In the first stage, DPSUs/ OFB/SHQs have displayed those items which they have imported in 2019-20 and are going to import in 2020-21, for the annual value of the items as Rs 1 million and above.
There are over 3,000 unique items with a value of over Rs 10,000 Crore that are available through the portal. DDP signed 4 contracts of Defence India Startup Challenge (DISC) 3 under Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX). iDEX aims to create an ecosystem which fosters innovation and encourages technology development in defence by engaging R&D institutes, academia, industries, startups and individual innovators.
The iDEX framework was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April 2018. iDEX is being implemented by Defence Innovation Organisation (DIO), a Section 8 company formed for this purpose, with Rs 50 crore support each from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), both of which are defence public sector units. More than 700 startups and innovators responded to the 3 rounds of Defence India Startup Challenge (DISC), out of which over 55 startups/ individuals have been selected to receive innovation grants in 15 technological areas under DISC 1, 2 and 3, through the prototype funding guidelines called ‘Support for Prototype and Research Kickstart’ (SPARK), which entail provisioning of grants upto Rs 1.5 crore to the startups on the basis of milestones through multiple tranches. For 44 winners identified under DISC 1 & 2, till date, 28 contracts have been signed and first tranche/second tranche has been released to the winners for prototype development. Under DISC 3, a total of 14 winners from three challenges (one each from Army, Navy and Air Force) were approved by the DIO Board on 3 February 2020. Out of the 14 winners, the first batch of four winners – three winners from Army challenge and one from Air Force challenge have been cleared for signing the SPARK Grant Contract. All the four contracts were signed on 14th August, 2020.
DPSU Mazgaon Dockyard Limited (MDL) signed MoU for indigenous overhauling of main motor of SSK class submarines with Medha Servo Drives Pvt Ltd. Presently overhaul of the main motor of SSK class submarines is carried out in Germany by a foreign firm. MDL is in the process of developing an Indian company, Medha Servo Drives Pvt. Ltd, to undertake the same in India. This would be aligned with the aims and objectives of Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan, apart from savings in time and cost (which are as yet not quantifiable). Success of this effort could even lead to indigenization of the Main Motor of submarines, which would be an extremely significant achievement. It is envisaged that MoU with the firm would be signed during the period 7–14 August 2020.Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) signed MoU with IIT Goa for Artificial Intelligence, IoT-CFD and other technology related fields. Key outcomes envisaged from the MoU with IIT-Goa are as follows:
1) Collaboration and undertaking joint research and development programs/ projects in Naval ship building design, Smart Manufacturing, Industry 4.0, Artificial Intelligence, 3D printing and Composites.
2) Share equipment, personnel and R&D facilities to facilitate research activities related to projects undertaken in the above-mentioned technical areas.
3) Evaluate and decide acquisition of new systems/ equipment for Projects undertaken in the abovementioned technical areas.
4) Facilitate internship of students of IIT-Goa with GSL.
5) Technology up-gradation training programs for GSL personnel.
6) To combine collective knowledge and technical expertise to develop new business opportunities in the above-mentioned technical areas.
An MoU on development of UAVs was signed between Defence PSU BEML and IIT, Kanpur. BEML signed another MoU on development of AI products with NASSCOM, Bengaluru. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited issued an ‘expression of interest’ for indigenization of 46 numbers of items for Russian project under Make-II having total value of Rs. 100 crores. BEL Issued EOI/ RFP for indigenization of the following 5 items having total value of Rs. 31 crore.
1) Brazing wire: Brazing wires are special alloys, presently being imported, are required for the vacuum brazing process.
2) Motion Platform, 6 degrees of freedom & payload 1000-2000 kg: Critical sub-assembly for vehicular simulators, presently imported.
3) Dummy weapons for small arm simulators: Critical components for various small arms simulators, not available indigenously.
4) Single Board Computer (SBC), Printed Circuit Board (PCB): Presently these PCBs are imported. SBC is used in current and future projects, hence indigenization is required, for cost savings & long-term maintenance. And
5) Design & development of 62X Day Zoom Lens: There is a huge requirement for Army, MHA and other agencies for long range day surveillance equipment. Day Zoom Lens is a part of this equipment being imported. Indigenization will achieve self-sustainability for manufacturing this item and avoids imported content.
BDL Issued EOI/ RFP for indigenization of 11 items under Make-II having total value of 15 crore. Components and sub-assemblies of naval products like, under-water connecters, contactors, ring laser gyro, pressure transducer, free gyro, Heli receiver, ATGM components & sub-assemblies like amplifiers, communication unit, transducer sub-assemblies and octol for war head of SAM missiles are ready for releasing RFP under MakeII. By indigenisation of the above saving of Rs. 15 crore will be achieved.
During the week-long Atmanirbhar Bharat celebrations new facilities were launched and/ or upgraded, contracts and MoUs were signed and EoI/ RFP were issued. Concluding his remarks Rajnath Singh said the events during the week long celebrations have taken the country forward towards a new unity among industry, academia, research and development, management, manpower and technology will take the country to new heights.
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‘ARMY CAN MEET ANY CHALLENGE TO SAFEGUARD COUNTRY’
The Army is fully prepared to meet any challenge like the use of drones and social media by adversaries to safeguard the country, said Commandant of Chennai-based Officers Training Academy (OTA) Lieutenant General M K Das. Lt Gen Das, who is also the colonel of the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) regiment, said the situation in J&K is getting better with the Army and other security agencies working together to stamp out terrorism. Speaking to media on the sidelines of the maiden attestation parade of 460 new recruits of the 126th batch after a successful 40-week training period at Dansal here, he said the Indian Army is aware of the challenges and prepared to give a befitting response to the enemies of the nation.
Talking about the need to introduce special training courses for soldiers in the aftermath of the developments in Afghanistan, he said, “Our training is very contemporary as it caters for all the contingencies and unforeseen situations. My young soldiers, who have taken the oath to defend the constitution and the country, will live up to all the challenges. One of the unique things of this regiment (JAKLI) is all our troops hail from J&K and Ladakh. They have ingrained quality to be security conscious much more than others.” Lt Gen Das said, “All the situations unfolding in the country or in our neighbourhood, the JAKLI regiment will continue to excel and be the lead agency in the fight against terrorism.” Asked about the challenges posed by the use of drones to hit targets and deliver weapons and narcotics from across the LoC and International Border, he said a capsule course on anti-drone measures has been introduced. “On Army Day on 15 January, our chief took the threat seriously and our soldiers are being prepared to deal with the challenge in a better way.” During recruitment training, Lt Gen Das said that besides the arms handing and exercises, thrust is also given on science and technology, cybersecurity and other new challenges. He said the misuse of social media by “anti-national” elements is a reality and the new recruits are being trained in cybersecurity during their basic and orientation courses.
On attempts by Pakistan to mislead the youth of J&K, Lt Gen Das said, “The youth of J&K is showing keenness to be a part of the regiment which is a message to those who think they can mislead our youth. Joining the regiment is the best way to serve the nation, the youth live like a family and there is complete communal harmony.” He said the regiment is increasing the number of local youth from Ladakh and would also go for recruitment in J&K to provide an opportunity to the local youth to become part of this regiment. Asked about his message to the misguided youth, he said, “J&K is the crown of India but if I focus as a soldier, I feel they (misguided youth) have not understood their country… the situation has not gone out of hand and the Army has kept its window open to allow them to surrender and join the national mainstream.”
He added, “We have a unit of 162 Infantry Territorial Army who are former militants but have become upright soldiers.” Lt Gen Das said the Army and other security agencies are working in close coordination and the situation in J&K is getting better and the “day is not far when this region will make our country proud.”
SOUTHERN NAVAL COMMAND OBSERVES INTERNATIONAL COASTAL CLEAN-UP DAY IN KOCHI
The Southern Naval Command observed International Coastal Clean-up Day on Saturday with a focus on mangrove plantation and clearance of plastic/non-biodegradable waste along with waterfront areas in and around Kochi, said a press release from the Ministry of Defence.
Pursuant to the global campaign of keeping coastlines clean, more than 600 Naval personnel and the families of Southern Naval Command undertook clearance of plastic and non-biodegradable waste at different locations spread across the city, coastal areas such as Fort Kochi beach, Thevara waterfront, Willingdon Island, Cherai beach, Bolgatty and around 2 km stretch of the Venduruthy channel while restoring around 1 lakh sqm of mangroves to the pristine condition. In addition, 80 mangrove saplings were also planted along the Venduruthy channel. Similar coastal cleanup drives and lectures/webinars/competitions emphasising protection of the coastal and marine environment were undertaken with the enthusiastic participation of the Naval community at other outstation Naval units located at Lonavala, Jamnagar, Chilka, Coimbatore, Goa, Ezhimala and Mumbai.
Being the Training Command of the Indian Navy, the Southern Naval Command has always been at the vanguard in promoting environmental conservation activities both at the Command Headquarters, Kochi as well as at Naval stations spread across the country.
Mandated to oversee naval training, the Southern Naval Command has conceptualised and implemented a variety of green initiatives. Keeping environmental preservation as one of the Key Result Areas, the Command has constantly endeavoured to motivate young officer and sailor trainees of the Indian Navy to imbibe the habit of protecting mother nature as part of their grooming efforts in preparing them to become responsible future Naval leaders and dependable citizens of India.
Particular attention has also been given to create more awareness among the families and more importantly the children.
During the last three years, the Command has adopted a multi-dimensional approach towards conservation of the environment and implementation of energy conservation methods.
To highlight a few, the personnel of the Command were actively involved in the rejuvenation of 4.5-km-long Venduruthy Channel near Kochi Naval base, creating awareness in and around Naval establishments.
Efforts were undertaken to enhance green cover by conducting mass plantation drives which included planting more than 75,000 trees, using the fast-growing Miyawaki forestation method. In addition, regular coastal clean-up drives, mangrove plantation drives, in-house handling and recycling of bio and non-biodegradable waste, adopting efficient energy and water-saving methods etc were also undertaken. The Command has also earnestly endeavoured to continue all the efforts for protecting and conserving the environment and natural resources. Towards achieving the same, the Command has implemented a Green Initiative and Environment Conservation Roadmap with a prime focus on Carbon footprint reduction.
With the personal involvement of Vice Admiral Anil Kumar Chawla, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command is committed to creating a clean, green and healthy environment in line with the visionary environment conservation policies of the Govt of India. On the occasion, Adv M Anilkumar, Mayor, Kochi Municipal Corporation and staff also participated in Kochi.
IAF TO HOLD AIR SHOW OVER DAL LAKE IN SRINAGAR ON 26 SEPT
An air show will be held here on 26 September where IAF’s skydiving team Akash Ganga and Suryakiran Aerobatic and Display Team and paramotor flying will manoeuvre the skies over the famous Dal Lake, officials informed on Saturday.
The air show will be organised by the Air Force Station Srinagar and the Jammu and Kashmir administration as part of the ongoing celebrations commemorating ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’, they said. The main aim of the exercise—under the theme ‘Give Wings to Your Dream’—is to motivate the youth of the valley to join the Indian Air Force (IAF) and to promote tourism in the region, the officials said.
The event will be flagged off Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha at the Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre (SKICC) overlooking Dal Lake.
More than 3,000 college and school students are expected to participate in the programme to witness the impressive manoeuvres of the IAF, which will motivate them to dream about a career in the force and in the aviation sector, the officials said. “The show will also develop passion among the students to give wings to their dreams. Along with the students, 700 teachers will also be present at the venue,” they added.
During the demonstration, students will also be familiarised with the new technological advancements achieved and incorporated by the IAF while flying aircraft in the sky over the world-famous Dal Lake, the officials said. Stalls will be established at SKICC where students will be familiarised with the achievements of the Air Force, employment opportunities in the IAF, recruitment rules and eligibility criteria, they added.
Srinagar-based PRO Defence Col Emron Musavi said the display will include flypast by various aircraft of the IAF. The spectators would also get to witness paramotor flying and IAF’s skydiving team Akash Ganga in action. ‘Ambassadors of IAF’, Suryakiran Aerobatic Display Team, will be performing in the valley after a gap of 14 years, he said. Col Musavi said the symphony orchestra of the IAF would also be performing at the event. The event would also consist of a photo exhibition depicting the history of the
IAF, he said.
ARMY ORGANISES EXHIBITION IN JAIPUR TO COMMEMORATE INDIA’S VICTORY IN 1971 WAR
JAIPUR : South Western Command of the Indian Army on Saturday organised an exhibition showcasing defence equipment at Chitrakoot Stadium in Jaipur to mark the 50th anniversary of India’s victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war.
Speaking to ANI, an Indian army official said, “We have displayed the defence equipment in this exhibition to make people aware of the Indian army achievements. We want to motivate the youth by showcasing these types of equipment.” “Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, these events had been started to make people aware of Indian Arm Forces. So, we are also continuing the move by organising these kinds of events,” he added.
Further, he said that India’s victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war is memorable for all the Indians, so, every citizen should be aware of this war.
BRO makes history, appoints woman Army officer in-charge of road construction unit
The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has appointed a woman Army officer for the first as the Officer Commanding of its 75 road construction company (RCC) in Uttarakhand, the Defence Ministry said on Sunday.
The three platoon commanders under Major Aaina, Captain Anjana, AEE (Civ) Bhawana Joshi and AEE (Civ) Vishnumaya K became the first women RCC. The appointments were made on August 30.
BRO on Sunday recalled the list of women officers who were assigned higher leadership roles in the organisation in the current year.
According to a statement issued by the Defence Ministry, BRO has inducted a large number of women into its workforce over the years, right from officers to the level of commercial pilot license holders. “In this regard, a General Reserve Engineer Force (GREF) officer EE (Civ) Vaishali S Hiwase took over the reins of 83 Road Construction Company on April 28, employed on an important Indo-China road connecting Munisairi-Bughdiar-Milam, in an area full of adversity and challenges. The lady officer has taken control and is leading the charge with meticulous execution of her tasks,” the statement said.
“The BRO created history again on 30 August when Major Aaina of Project Shivalik took charged as Officer Commanding, 75 Road Construction Companies (RCC) at Pipalkoti in Chamoli district in Uttarakhand. She is the first Indian Army Engineer Officer to command a road construction company. Not only this, all three platoon commanders under her, Captain Anjana, AEE (Civ) Bhawana Joshi and AEE (Civ) Vishnumaya K are lady officers and they have together created a first-ever women RCC. The Border Roads plans to make four such all women-led RCCs, two each in North Eastern and Western Sectors.”
As India celebrates 75 Years of Azaadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, it also celebrates the ongoing efforts of our Nation towards women empowerment. Women today have started assuming their rightful, equal place as the frontrunners in nation-building and representatives of our strong national character, the statement read.
Over the last six decades, in a graduated and steady manner, the BRO has increased the number of women employed in various roles and duties of road construction. A consolidated effort is being made to empower them by giving them authority and responsibilities to undertake work independently. These women have become symbols of Nari Shakti in their respective areas.
IN FIRST FOREIGN VISIT AFTER TAKING OVER AS CDS, GEN BIPIN RAWAT TO VISIT RUSSIA, US
In his first visit abroad after taking over as the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Bipin Rawat will be visiting Russia and the US.
Rawat took over his new office as CDS on 31 December 2019, and since then has been declining foreign invitations for focusing on the new assignment of integrating the defence forces as a combined fighting force. “There is a conference of the CDS-rank officers of the Shanghai Cooperation Agreement member countries. China and Pakistan are also part of this grouping,” senior defence officials said.
The CDS conference would be focusing on addressing the regional security issues and Afghanistan is also likely to come up for discussion, they said.
The CDS would also witness the activities of the respective armed forces taking part in the SCO peace mission drills being held in Russia. Indian Army and Air Force are also taking part in the exercise there.
The visit will take place in the coming week and soon after return from Russia, Rawat would be leaving for the US for meeting his counterpart and other American military leadership at the Pentagon.
The two countries have been coming closer militarily in the last few years and have been holding multiple military exercises and hardware cooperation.
The Indian military saw a major change in senior-level structures under the Narendra Modi government as the focus is now on the theatrisation of the fighting forces and bringing in more capabilities and jointness among the three services.
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