Image Source : PTI General Anil Chauhan, CDS of India
Chief of Defense Staff (CDS) General Anil Chauhan has given a strong message to China in gestures. He said on Saturday that it is important for India to achieve self-reliance in the defense sector and reduce dependence on imports for military equipment in order to maintain its strategic autonomy and take on new responsibilities commensurate with its emerging stature. In his address to a think-tank ‘Chanakya Dialogue’, General Chouhan said that along with India’s economic growth, its ‘soft power’ (soft power), technological progress and ability to stand firm to defend its territory contributing to the rise of its comprehensive national power.
Gen Chouhan’s remarks about the ability to stand firm to defend its territory is in the apparent reference to the ongoing three-year standoff with China in the eastern Ladakh region. General Chouhan also highlighted the importance of self-reliance in defense and said that reducing the import dependence of the armed forces is important for India to maintain its strategic autonomy and take on new responsibilities commensurate with its size and economy.
Focused on military self-reliance
The CDS said, “Our armed forces are heavily dependent on foreign OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) for military equipment. I believe that such a situation is not sustainable in the emerging geopolitical environment.” Referring to the global geopolitical turmoil, General Chauhan said that Japan, Britain, Russia, China, Germany, Poland, South Korea and Many other countries are significantly increasing their defense budgets and this situation could lead to disruptions in the global supply chain of military equipment. He said that there is an opportunity for Indian defense manufacturers to take advantage of this situation.
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