Source : News18
|Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath at a BrahMos missile display in Lucknow. (File Photo)|
The BrahMos unit in Lucknow will be the “centrepiece” of the Defence Corridor Project in Uttar Pradesh and work will begin on the mega unit in October, Awanish K Awasthi, the Additional Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh, has told News18.
India will manufacture its next-generation BrahMos (BrahMos-NG) at this unit and Rs 3,000 crore has been committed as investment for the project by BrahMos Aerospace, the joint venture of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India and NPO Mashinostroeyenia of Russia. Rs 1,500 crore of investment will come in phase one and more than 100 BrahMos missiles will be manufactured here in the next three years.
Awasthi said UP has been assured that all clearances will come from the DRDO for the project by September and construction of the unit will begin by October. “We have allotted 80 hectares of land at a nominal cost and the joint venture has taken possession of the land; 50 per cent of the boundary work is also complete. They have now planned bigger than what they had originally planned,” Awasthi said.
The Additional Chief Secretary said the BrahMos Unit will be the “centre of the production which will make the main difference” in the upcoming Defence Corridor in UP. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh laid the foundation stone of BrahMos Missile set-up in Lucknow on December 26 last year. Another key project in the Defence Corridor is establishing a state of the art common Defence Testing Infrastructure under the scheme promoted by Ministry of Defence, Awasthi said.
DEFENCE CORRIDOR SHAPING UP, NO PROGRESS IN AGRA
The Defence Industrial Corridor in Uttar Pradesh is planned to be established in six nodes across the state in as many districts and till date, a total of 93 industrial and institutional MoUs have been signed with various private investors and organisations with an estimated investment value of over 11,256 crore, the UP government says. The maximum number of MoUs (35) have been signed for the Aligarh node, followed by 15 in Lucknow node, 12 in Kanpur node and nine in Jhansi.
Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) is setting anchor unit with investments worth Rs 400 crore in phase 1 in Jhansi on 183 hectares of land for the manufacturing of propulsion systems.
Nearly 1,600 hectares of land parcels have been procured by the UP government for the Defence Corridor but no land has been identified or procured in the Agra node. “Lucknow node is seeing fast activity and Aligarh node is sold out. Kanpur node we are expecting big investments and Jhansi we have for BDL and others are also coming,” Awasthi told News18.
The Agra node, however, has seen no progress due to the Taj Trapezium Zone (TTZ) restrictions that put a complete ban on all industrial activities in a large area of the Agra region.
ENCOURAGING FOREIGN OEMS
Defence sources told News18 that the central government is taking several policy measures to ensure that maximum foreign Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) are encouraged to come and set joint ventures with Indian manufacturers in the defence industrial corridors.
“This would be in line with the government’s self-reliance efforts to ensure that not just home-grown start-ups set up their ventures in this industrial corridor, but bigger foreign OEMs too come in with domestic partners,” an official said.
The Defence Ministry’s draft defence production and export promotion policy is awaiting final clearances from the government.