The year the Indian armed forces broke down barriers

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New Delhi, first published December 31, 2021, 6:15 AM IST

For the past seven years, the introduction of sweeping reforms in the defense sector has been one of the priorities of Narendra Modi’s government. Several political measures have also been taken this year. Some of them were revolutionaries. We’ll take a look:

Women in NDA

Lifting the gender barrier, the government allowed female cadets to enter the National Defense Academy – a joint defense service training institute of the Indian Armed Forces. The decision taken for the first time since the institution was founded 66 years ago is seen as an innovative policy on equality. This development came after the Supreme Court ordered the Center to ensure the entry of aspiring women into the NDA. This year, 1.78 lakh of female candidates took part in the NDA entrance exam, which was held in November.

Standing Commission for Women

As the government sanctioned the Indian Army’s Standing Commission for Short-Term Service, female officers were commissioned in 10 streams – army air defense, army air force, signal engineering, l ‘electronics and mechanics, engineers, army service corps, army munitions corps and intelligence corps – in addition to the existing channels of judges and attorneys general and army educational corps , the process of assigning them a standing committee began this year. A total of 557 female officers have obtained the Standing Commission since last year.

Artillery Factory Corporatization Council

The government announced this year the restructuring of the 41 existing OFB companies. They have been grouped into seven separate entities. The goals were to downsize a large conglomerate and reshape the defense industry.

Second negative list of defense imports

Giving major impetus to India’s Aatmanirbhar Bharat initiative, the government notified restrictions on the import of 108 additional weapons and military systems, such as new generation corvettes, airborne early warning systems and tank engines. within a staggered period of four and a half years. The first negative list for defense imports was filed in August last year. The list included 101 items that included towed artillery guns, short-range surface-to-air missiles, cruise missiles, and offshore patrol vessels. The second list of positive indigenization includes complex systems, sensors, simulators, weapons and ammunition, including helicopters, next-generation corvettes, early warning and airborne control systems, tank engines, medium power radars for the mountains, MRSAM weapons systems and many other items to meet the requirements of the Indian armed forces.

Indigenous Acquisitions Fund

Following the precedent set last year, the government has increased the share of the capital modernization budget allocated to domestic industry procurement from 58 percent to 63 percent to Rs 70,221 crore. Funds allocated for indigenous procurement, nearly 25 percent of the budget at Rs 17,500 crore, have been under-allocated for procurement from the national private sector defense industry.

Expansion of avenues for the promotion of women officers in the Indian army

For the first time, the Indian Army paved the way for the promotion of five female officers serving in the Corps of Signals, the Corps of Electronics and Mechanical Engineers (EME) and the Corps of Engineers, to the rank of colonel after the completion of 26 years in service. Previously, this promotion was only granted to female officers of the Army Medical Corps, Judge Advocate General, and Army Education Corps.

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Last updated on December 31, 2021, 6:15 AM IST

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