Developing a more Indian defence

Discussion in 'Strategic Forces' started by Kunal Biswas, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

    May 26, 2010
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    Developing a more Indian defence

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    More at source : :: - Indian Military News Headlines ::
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  3. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

    Nov 18, 2012
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    On India’s quest for high-end technology
    For high-end technology, nobody in the world will help you. We have to have our own initiative. This is one area where the country needsto give a lot more thrust. For example, the material gap — on metallic composites or carbon composites or polymeric materials, even sensors, rare earth materials — has been identified as the key area where we need to take up initiatives. Today we have become highly self-sufficient and capable in designing world-class systems whether it is radars, missiles, or sonars, but what we need to strengthen is the sub-system and the components, devices and the raw materials. For the Agni strategic system where we had no option to import, we have gone 85-per-cent indigenous. But similar things have to be done in other areas such as tactical missiles. We require tungsten and other materials which India does not produce. We have to take extra initiative in terms of investment and technology, infrastructure, knowledge generation.
    On the role of private sector
    Private sector is providing the infrastructure and in many cases they are joining hands with industries abroad but a lot more needs to be done in the private sector in the R&D department. If you see the industrial R&D in the U.S., it is almost 50 per cent of the total R&D expenditure, whereas in India it is very meagre part of it. And most of it is perhaps ceremonial.
    On FDI in defence
    Let good technology come in, there is no harm. We are not opening up just to get money.
    On indigenisation and licensed production
    In today’s globalised environment, we have to see what needs to be bought, what needs to be developed and what needs to have transfer of technology. You cannot afford to make everything yourself. It is neither viable nor cost effective in the long-term — and that is where the decision has to be taken.
    For example, today in DRDO, if industry can make something, it’s a good thing. We don’t want to start developing [the same thing]. [We] can work onthe next higher end products,the higher level of technology.The industry also has to see if something [it is developing] is commercially available at a cheaper price. Life-cycle costs are the critical part. It is not just one-time buying of one thing, the question is how are you going to support it and whether support will be available under all conditions.
    For licensed production, if we are able to get good technology that is good. But if it ends with assembling and processes coming from abroad, then we have to see. Again, licensed production for MiGs helped in creating a large infrastructure base and today we are able to go for LCA and other things. To that extent, ithas been very helpful. But if you look at the knowledge gained through licensed products, it is a matter of debate. I am not aware of any major system for which we have taken licensed production and then built on it and arrived at a better product. We keep building the same thing, we are not getting the knowledge to build a better system — that is why our licensed production methodologies have to be re-examined. China is doing intelligent reverse engineering and many countries have done that in the past. That is the way of moving forward.
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