‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047: Govt focused on long-term gains, says Rajnath Singh

New Delhi, Feb 24 : Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday said that the government is focusing on long-term gains and not short-term outcomes to make India a developed nation by 2047.

“The government, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is focusing on long-term gains and not short-term outcomes to make India a developed nation by 2047. Radical changes have been made in the defence sector for long-term gains to make it completely self-reliant, and achieve the Prime Minister’s goal of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’,” Rajnath Singh said during a Defence Summit organised by a media outlet in Delhi.

He said that unlike in the past, the present government has formulated and implemented policies which not only provide short-term gains for just five years.

He said that the reforms undertaken in the defence sector for long-term gains in the last few years, including creation of the post of Chief of Defence Staff and setting up of the Department of Military Affairs has enhanced jointness, synergy and smooth coordination among the three services.

“Earlier, the three services used to work in silos. We focused on their integration which was an out-of-the-box step and the need of the hour. It was a little difficult in the beginning; but today our military is ready with better coordination to deal with every challenge together,” the Defence Minister said during a Defence Summit organised by a private media organisation in New Delhi.

He said that the five positive indigenisation lists of the services, comprising over 500 items, and four other lists, with over 4,600 items for DPSUs ensures that the soldiers use made in India weapons and platforms.

He said that today the military is using weapons and platforms, which are manufactured on our own soil.

“Government’s persistent efforts towards self-reliance have started to bear fruit as the defence production has crossed Rs one lakh crore,” the Defence Minister said.

He said that earlier, India was known to be an arms importer but today the country has come out of our comfort zone and found a place in the list of top-25 arms exporter nations.

“Seven-eight years ago, defence exports did not even touch Rs 1,000 crore. Today, it has touched Rs 16,000 crore. By 2028-29, annual defence production is expected to touch Rs three lakh crore and defence exports Rs 50,000 crore,” the Defence Minister said.

He also underscored the significance of investing in futuristic technologies such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing, smart weapons, cyber warfare and space warfare.

He also voiced the government’s long-term vision of making India a major player in the field of technology, saying that a number of steps have been taken, including the launch of Innovations of Defence Technology (iDEX), Technology Development Fund scheme under DRDO and the setting up of National Research Foundation.

He said that in the Financial Year 2023-24, capital acquisition worth more than Rs 4,35,000 crore have been given in-principle approval till now.

He added that the Ministry of Defence was allocated Rs 6.21 lakh crore in the union Budget, which is the highest among the ministries.

He also spoke of the Agnipath scheme, which aims to make the country’s military as one of the strongest in the world.

Rajnath Singh added that women are being provided opportunities in every field at par with their male counterparts, which is another important aspect of the government’s long-term approach.

“Through the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam, women have been given their political rights, which was pending for years. Women today stand shoulder-to-shoulder with men in every field. The role of women in the armed forces is increasing and becoming more important, and it will continue to grow,” he said.

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