Indian Army chief General Naravane backed the Modi government's push for economic self-reliance saying that the Armed Forces are also working towards self-reliance and fully in support of 'Make In India' initiative. PM Narendra Modi has pitched the 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan' with the intent to make the country more self-reliant in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic and subsequent economic distress.
"We have always been working towards self-reliance and are fully in support of the Make In India initiative. In the past, we have also had new categorizations like 'Make One Make Two', which makes it easier for private industries to participate in (manufacturing) defence-related products," General Naravane said.
He further said that defence PSUs and Ordinance Factory Boards are also partnering with domestic private players to manufacture defence-related products within India. The General informed that nearly 70-80% of the Army's orders, both by numbers and costs, have gone to Indian firms and will continue to support indigenisation.
Following the marathon meetings with Chief Ministers of states, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation on Tuesday. In his address, PM Modi emphasised on the need of 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' i.e. 'Self-Reliant India' as the only way forward amid the Coronavirus pandemic which has gripped the entire world today. The Prime Minister highlighted that the world looks upon India to lead in this battle and that the 21st century should be the century where India shines.
Earlier in the day, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled the first set of 15 measures of the financial package. She stated that PM Narendra Modi laid down the vision of 'Aatmanirbhar India' (self-reliant India) after deep consultation with several sections of the society. Sitharaman also mentioned that the focus of the package is on the factors of production- land, labour, liquidity, and others.
Sitharaman expounded on the true essence of 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' (self-reliant India) and how that differed from the concept of becoming an 'isolationist country.' She held that the policy is not meant to make India look inwards and adopt any isolationist stand, but to further develop its standing in global trade and commerce.