Govt. Planning to corporatise ordnance factories

Discussion in 'Indian Army' started by Lions Of Punjab, Jan 18, 2015.

  1. Lions Of Punjab

    Lions Of Punjab Regular Member

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    GOVT. PLANNING TO CORPORATISE ORDNANCE FACTORIES

    Govt. planning to corporatise ordnance factories - The Hindu

    Plan is to change them into PSUs to make them more accountable

    Days after terminating the contract of DRDO chief Dr. Avinash Chander, the government is planning to corporatise some of the ordnance factories. The plan is to initially corporatize about 10 ordnance factories and turn them into Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) to make them more accountable and increase their capabilities, sources in Defence Ministry said.

    Those under consideration are the cloth making and equipment factories in the Kanpur belt. A note on this matter has already been circulated in the highest echelons of the government and the proposal is likely to get the government nod by April, the sources added.

    These factories are into manufacturing personnel clothing, parachute material, small arms, metallurgical equipment, shells and other such equipment.

    The move comes close on the heels of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar promising a major overhaul of the DRDO and defence production units.

    This is not for the first time though that corporatisation of ordnance factories is being considered. In the UPA I regime too, the government mooted such a proposal in accordance with the recommendations of the Vijay Kelkar committee towards increasing self-reliance in defence preparedness. However, the proposal did not go through due to opposition from trade unions.

    In the blog of the Indian National Defence Workers Federation, its General Secretary, R. Srinivasan has stated that in a meeting with the Chairman, Ordnance Factories Board (OFB) at Kolkata, they learnt that the government was against further expansion of the ordnance equipment factories.

    Mr. Parrikar had asked the OFB Chairman to focus on core-competency areas namely ammunition, hardware, armoured vehicles and artillery and in future ordnance factories have to compete with other firms for supplying equipment to the armed forces.

    [​IMG]
     
    jackprince, Sameet2, sgarg and 3 others like this.
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  3. grampiguy

    grampiguy Regular Member

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    If RM Parrikar is able to reform the OFB and convert its companies into DPSUs or specialised cluster based corporations or separate companies, he is worthy of being given a Bharat Ratna award.
     
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  4. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    OFB should itself be corporatised.

    Every Ordnance Board factory is overstaffed, inefficient, corrupt and never able to meet the numbers of arms and equipment that they are capable of producing. Full of slippages.
     
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  5. grampiguy

    grampiguy Regular Member

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    I wonder which ones of the OFs are better than their peers? Some of them need to be sold out rightly, an example being the Vehicle Factory Jabalpur (VFJ). Its products are costlier than the OEM Ashok Leyland from whom it got the ToT. Same goes for cloth maker OFs who source their material from Hong Kong and pass it on as indigenous stuff to Indian forces.

    These companies may have been great assets during the initial period after freedom but as of today, they are an unwanted burden. Corporatisation, disinvestment, government owned corporate operated (GOCO) and restructuring, whatever works --has to be adopted to improve this situation. However, the first step should be -- breaking down of the behemoth -- Ordinance Factory Board. It is the main hurdle in any further reform.
     
  6. PaliwalWarrior

    PaliwalWarrior Regular Member

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    sir

    even if they do it right and on time

    are teh force accepting ?

    see arjun insas etc etc

    what is the motivation & incentive ?
     
  7. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The whole problem with OFB factories is that it is basically a political question.

    They give employment to many and quite a few of the posts are sinecure. Over staffing. Closing down will cause a great social and political churn that no govt or political party in power is ready to get singed with. The only way is to corporatise it as it has been done for other PSUs. And having done so, organise recruitment in a more scientific manner that ensures profitablilty and not be taken as a 'social' outlet to give jobs to the unemployed millions.

    There have been many studies and recommendations given from the AHQ to MOD, but because closing down some of the unproductive OFB factories would cause a social and political churn, no Govt has taken the risk.

    For instance the Clothing OFB is a total waste since as a case in point - the uniform it produces for the JOCs and jawans. The uniforms are so badly manufactured that they do last the life cycle that it is supposed to last and the colour fades in a couple of washes.



    INSAS has been dogged by manufacturing issues, more than designing issues. OFB is responsible for manufacturing.

    Weaponry has to keep pace with the modern application that surface in the battlefield space as also in constantly changing demands in COIN. Therefore, it comes to pass that the requirements of these two dimensions of combat cannot be universally applied. Since it is not feasible financially or otherwise to devise separate weaponry for different battlefield and combat scenarios, one has to mix and match or seek weaponry near compatible for both scenarios. Therefore, what was current in earlier years, may not be current now. Hence, the constant struggle to keep pace with modernity and scenarios. Hence, the quest for new weapons.

    That said, if weapons that are current are shoddily manufactured without care for quality control, the users' confidence in the weapon is lost and it well nigh impossible to change the idea. INSAS, in my opinion is a good weapon. However, since the manufacturing was shoddy, defects became more regular than normal. Credibility was lost.

    As far as Arjun goes, the jury is out. It is not that the army does not want indigenous weaponry. All want a constant and assured supply of weapons, weapon platforms, ammunition, electronics, especially during critical times like war. And a constant and assured supply of weapons, weapon platforms, ammunition, electronics can only happen if it is made in India. Therefore, there is indeed a desire to have indigenously designed and manufactured weapon, weaponry et al.

    What would motivate the OFB? A difficult question to answer. It is currently taken as a job, assured for life with perks and pension and bred with the usual laid back attitude that plagues all Govt offices. Work or don't work, you pay and pension is assured. And if given a show cause, there is always the Trade Union to go on strike and add to further slippages and 'rest'.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2015
  8. sgarg

    sgarg Senior Member Senior Member

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    For OFB, the first step is corporatization. Second step is bringing in professional management, and restructuring. This should be combined with competition from private sector by giving arms and ammunition manufacture to private sector.

    The government can do a lot in the area of OFB and DPSUs. The political opposition to change is always there. These people have to be told to adjust to the new world.
     
  9. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    OFB facilities are not very impressive, They need upgrade as well as the workforce ..

    With strict discipline and uniform under a world class infrastructure ..
     
  10. Ky Loung

    Ky Loung Regular Member

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    Privatize all of it. Let these new corporation fail or be successful on their merit. Reward success punish failures.
     
  11. Chris Jude

    Chris Jude Regular Member

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    My humble suggestion would be to pull out all such production from OFB's and give them to responsible Private manufacturers, in that even the Insas 1B1, which will bring in more quality control and better weapons.
     

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