Seeking to ensure complete transparency and accountability, the Defence Ministry is providing online booking facilities to exhibitors and vendors for the upcoming Aero India military exhibition in Bangalore while booking their space and availing facilities there.
"We have developed a purely transactional website for Aero India as we are digitising the show. Exhibitors can enter the website after registration and book their space at the show venue without even having to call anyone as there is virtually nil human interface for this purpose," Defence Ministry spokesperson Col Aman Anand said.
The facility provided to the exhibitors is just like the popular online booking applications through which users can book the seats of their choice in cinema halls and know exactly where they would be seated.
Transparency in allowing space to exhibitors will be a big help for exhibitors as a few years back, an air force officer was Court martialled for allegedly seeking bribe for providing the space of choice to a vendor during the show.
Sharing details of this innovative booking facility, ministry officials said that the Defence Ministry has so far earned revenue of Rs 60 crore from the exhibitors where the payments are being made through payment gateways by the vendors.
Till now, 308 vendors consisting of 130 foreign vendors including defence majors American Boeing, Russian Rosoboroexport and several European firms have registered using this online facility available at the official AeroIndia website.
The digitalisation of the air show is in sync with the best practices adopted by the world's biggest and oldest air shows, the officials said.
Through digitisation, the Department of Defence Production has also provided facilities to the visitors through which they can directly complain to the ministry about unclean toilets or any other issues faced by them at the show, the officials said.
The Ministry is also developing an app for the show which will help the user to avail all the facilities at the venue including directions to the stalls which they want to visit and book parking and other facilities.
Officials also asserted that in order to encourage digitalisation, all the visitors who don't book tickets online would be charged Rs 250 extra for buying them on the spot. The show would be held from February 20-24 at Bengaluru.