Can’t source defence equipment 100 percent from private sector: Parrikar

Panaji, March 29 (IANS) Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Tuesday said defence equipment and weapons cannot be sourced 100 percent from the private sector.

The Ordnance Factories Board (OFB) needed to be an essential part of the defence manufacturing ecosystem, he said at a seminar organised by Assocham at the ongoing Defence Expo 2016 near here.

He also said procurement of defence equipment or weapons was not the first target of his ministry, but providing his troops with qualitative equipment in adequate quantity was of most importance.

“The first target of my ministry is not procurement. The first target is to ensure that the armed forced are provided with the best equipment and the quantity adequate that they remain effective,” Parrikar said.

His reaction came in response to an earlier request made by Associated Chambers of Commerce & Industry of India (Assocham) president Sunil Kanoria to ease the role of the Ordnance Factories Board and defence-related public sector undertakings vis-a-vis defence equipment manufacture.

Parrikar said the private sector was driven by profits and it was only the government which was in a position to sustain skilled manpower, equipment-manufacturing infrastructure over prolonged periods of time even to produce small quantities of equipment or weaponry.

Life of Indian neta, babu mirrors ‘Yes Minister’ series: Parrikar

Panaji, March 29 (IANS) A day in the life of an Indian politician or bureaucrat also mirrors the comic scenarios depicted in the popular British sitcom ‘Yes Minister’ and ‘Yes Prime Minister’, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Tuesday.

Speaking during a function organised by Assocham during the ongoing Defence Expo 2016 in South Goa’s Betul village, Parrikar also explained the nuances behind popular bureaucratic cliches “under consideration” and “under active consideration” to industry captains and foreign delegates who attended the event.

“Before I entered politics, I not only watched BBC’s ‘Yes Minister’ (and) ‘Yes Prime Minister’ series, but I must have read the books eight to ten times. But I realised that it actually works that way when I joined politics, entered assembly and (later) was a chief minister,” the former Goa chief minister said.

“So I always say, that when we say that your request is ‘under consideration’ that means someone in bureaucracy is trying to trace the file and your request is ‘under active consideration’ that means file has been traced,” Parrikar said.

Written by Sir Anthony Jay and Johnathan Lynn and starring Paul Eddington and Nigel Hawthorne, the twin series produced by the British Broadcasting Corporation were a television rage in the 1980s and 1990s.

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