MoD makes import ban on specific items notified in ‘Positive Indigenisation Lists’

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The armed forces will be allowed to import the weapons and systems that are on the government’s list of defence items under an import ban if the domestic industry fails to supply the military hardware within the given period and in the required quantity, the government expresses on the given matter. 

The new empowered monitoring panel will be taken into consideration while deciding to approve the specific cases of import. The Defence Indigenisation Committee (DIC), being set up under chief of defence staff General Bipin Rawat who also holds the charge of secretary, DMA will approve such a decision of import ban. 

“In the event, the domestic industry is not able to supply equipment in the stipulated time-frame, quantity, or where there are inadequacies in the equipment affecting the safety of troops, or in case of any other technical issues, such as no valid response to a Request For Proposal (RFP), etc. specific cases for import could be taken up to meet the immediate requirement, based on the recommendations of DIC,” according to the guidelines issued by the DMA.

“These Guidelines will be applied prospectively with effect from the date of issuance,” the notifications dated November 02, 2021 state. It was put out by the MoD on November 24.

Experts said the move was aimed at keeping the armed forces operationally ready to take on any challenge. “It’s the right step because developing technology and building capability to produce modern weapons and systems locally can take time. In the interim, we may have to import to offset our inadequacies,” said former Northern Army commander Lieutenant General BS Jaswal (retd).

“The committee besides formulation of positive indigenization lists will, inter alia, be responsible for reviewing the progress of listed equipment, platforms, and weapons, and to apply correctives were required to ensure that the listed items translate into production/ developmental orders,” the note added.

209 items that are planned to be banned till 2025 include artillery guns, missile destroyers, ship-borne cruise missiles, light combat aircraft, long-range land-attack cruise missiles, basic trainer aircraft, and different types of helicopters.

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