“Pakistan Defence Industrial Base is better than us,” said an Army Vice Chief.
Indian Express quoted a top Army general’s statement on Tuesday stating that Pakistan has a better military industrial base camp than India. The General even added that Pakistan exports better and more equipment overseas than us.
Well, does this mean they are better?
Lt. Gen. Sarath Chand, Vice Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS), said, “The ordnance factories have not been able to keep pace with the changing technology even when there is no competition whatsoever and it is an unsuccessful method of supporting our defence requirements.”
He added further saying that Pakistan probably has a better industrial base, as far as defence production is concerned, than our country. In fact, they export defence equipment abroad, definitely more than what India is doing.
But what is the reason behind?
He wonders that it is the working of the ordnance factory that is at fault or even the lack of accountability. He even mentions that there is a lack of research and development in the production. They do not even have the capability of absorbing latest technology. In some cases even failing to assemble products that have been exported from abroad is adding up to the failure.
He said, “It is very hard to see ordnance factories changing in the present state. It has become an unsuccessful method of supporting our defence requirements.”
He made it sure to put up a point as strict as this one in the inaugural session of AMICON 2017 which is a two-day conference organised by the Army and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
He even cautioned that in the case of a war, one will have to look abroad for its sustenance. And no one comes to rescue when you are in trouble. He was sure to point it out that our past experiences with ‘friends’ haven’t been really fruitful. He said, “Friends have let us down whenever the chips have been down.”
Well, let’s hope the ‘Make in India’ program will bring in some major changes here.
Not just the program, but the creation of Army Design Bureau and the Defence Procurement Policy will bring some positive changes in the sector.