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MSMEs Secure Contracts Worth Rs 70 Crore in Indian Army's Defence Procurement Drive

Updated: Feb 27, 2024 04:04:40pm

MSMEs Secure Contracts Worth Rs 70 Crore in Indian Army's Defence Procurement Drive

Pune, Feb 27 (KNN) Chief of Army Staff General Manoj Pande revealed that the Indian Army is actively harnessing the potential of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and startups to foster innovation and bolstering indigenous defence capabilities.

Speaking at the Maharashtra MSME Defence Expo 2024 in Pune on Monday, General Pande highlighted the strides made through the Innovation in Defence Procurement Excellence (iDEX) route, emphasising its pivotal role in shaping the future of defence procurement in India, reported businessline.

General Pande announced that the Indian Army is currently pursuing 55 projects under the iDEX route, amounting to a substantial investment of Rs 400 crore.

These projects encompass collaborations with 65 startups, showcasing a concerted effort to leverage emerging technologies and entrepreneurial spirit.

Notably, four contracts valued at Rs 70 crore have already been finalised for the procurement of equipment tailored for field exploitation, demonstrating the tangible outcomes of the iDEX initiative.

Highlighting the unique approach adopted by iDEX, General Pande underscored its adherence to the Spiral Mode of development.

This iterative process, characterised by field exploitation and user feedback, facilitates the concurrent development of equipment based on real-world recommendations.

By incorporating user insights early in the development cycle, iDEX ensures the rapid evolution of indigenous technology and platforms to meet the dynamic needs of the Indian Army.

In addition to fostering collaborations with external partners, General Pande emphasised the Indian Army's commitment to promoting in-house innovation.

Two notable innovations, namely "VIDYUT RAKSHAK" – an IoT-based generator protection system, and a biomedical device, have been successfully transferred to industry for mass production.

This underscores the Army's proactive approach towards nurturing homegrown talent and catalysing the proliferation of cutting-edge technologies.

General Pande highlighted the Indian Army's focus on securing Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) for products developed in collaboration with industry stakeholders.

To date, the Army has filed 66 IPRs, including patents, copyrights, and design registrations.

This concerted effort not only safeguards indigenous innovations but also incentivises collaborative partnerships by ensuring equitable recognition and protection of intellectual assets.

Commending Maharashtra's proactive stance towards defence manufacturing, General Pande lauded the State for being the first in India to formulate a Defence Manufacturing Policy post the liberalisation of private investment in the sector.

Maharashtra's designation of Aerospace and Defence manufacturing as a thrust sector underlines its strategic vision towards fostering industrial growth.

Notably, the State's contributions, accounting for over 20 per cent of the country's output in aircraft, ships, and boats, and 30 per cent in weapons and ammunition, reflect its pivotal role in driving the nation's defence industrial sector forward.

(KNN Bureau)


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