With the commencement of Aero India 2021, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh sent out a strong message to hostile neighbors, saying India is prepared to counter any threat and protect its sovereignty at any cost. The latest message in New Delhi came in the backdrop of the prolonged standoff between Indian and Chinese troops at the border in the eastern Ladakh region. “We have long witnessed unfortunate attempts to employ force to change the status quo along our unresolved borders. India is vigilant and prepared to counter and defeat any misadventure to defend our people and the territorial integrity at all costs,” said Mr Singh during the Aero India show in Bengaluru.
“India also faces threats and challenges emanating from multiple fronts. India is a victim of state-sponsored and state inflicted terrorism, which is now a global threat”, said the minister.“We are a peace-loving country. We remain committed to peace and stability across the world. We also remain committed to the belief that self-reliance and indigenous defence capabilities are the foundations to enduring peace,” he added.
Mr Singh emphasized underscored India’s multi-pronged efforts in domestic manufacturing of defence equipment. “We have taken steps to strengthen our security apparatus. Domestic manufacturing of bigger and complex defence platforms has now become the focus of our policy under ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’. We plan to spend $130 billion on military modernization in next 7-8 years.”
“The Government of India has enhanced FDI in defence sector up to 74% through the Automatic Route and 100% through the Government route, which would act as a catalyst for foreign players to invest in India,” quoted Mr Singh.The minister said that India aims to be one of the biggest countries in the defence sector from design to production and called for development of 83 new indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) – Tejas MK1A, the biggest Make in India Defence contract till date.
“Aero India-21 aligns with India’s vision to be among the top five countries of the world in defence and aerospace industries, with active participation of public and private sector fulfilling the objective of self-reliance as well as requirements of other friendly countries. We are one of the few countries in the world which produce a fourth-generation fighter aircraft, nuclear submarine, main battle tank and inter-continental ballistic missiles,” highlighted the minister.
The three-day event marks the world’s first hybrid defence exhibition and will feature India’s indigenous products, flying together in a special formation called ‘Aatmanirbhar Formation Flight’, showcasing India’s self-reliance to make state of the art fighter jets and helicopters.
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