KTR urges Centre to rethink Atmanirbhar in defence sector, encourage States like TS

COVID 19 Updates KTR urges Centre to rethink Atmanirbhar in defence sector, encourage States like TS

Minister lays stone for ₹1,000 crore VEM Technologies integrated defence systems manufacturing facility

Minister lays stone for ₹1,000 crore VEM Technologies integrated defence systems manufacturing facility

Industries Minister K.T. Rama Rao, on Wednesday, urged the Centre to rethink about the Atmanirbhar policy in the defence sector by encouraging firms to invest in the “already-existing eco-system in progressive and development oriented States like Telangana” rather than act as a “big brother” and take them towards States like Uttar Pradesh just “because it is in power there”.

“When Nirmala Sitharaman was the Defence Minister, we appealed to her to allocate a defence industrial corridor between Hyderabad and Bengaluru, considering there are 1,000-odd defence and aerospace firms and related ancillary units functioning from several decades, but the project was taken to Bundelkhand. We accept it, but States like Telangana, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, having well-established defence aerospace firms built over decades, should also be encouraged irrespective of political affiliations,” he said.

The Minister was addressing a gathering after participating in the foundation stone laying ceremony for the ₹1,000 crore VEM Technologies integrated defence systems manufacturing facility coming up at 511 acres at the National Investment Manufacturing Zone (NIMZ) in Zaheerabad (Sangareddy district), about 100 km from here. It is expected to generate 2,000 direct and 4,000 indirect jobs for making missiles, radars, and sniper rifles, among others.

Bone of contention

Mr. Rama Rao’s bone of contention was that the progress of the defence manufacturing capacities in the country can be scaled up easily in areas where the defence firms are flourishing over a period of time rather than initiate in a new place when “nothing might happen”. “This is not a competition between States or cities within our country, because multinational firms look at a country as a whole for new joint venture investments in the defence aerospace sector,” he reasoned.

The Minister also requested the VEM Technologies to ensure that locals get preference in the semi-skilled and unskilled labour required for the facility. The government was ready to invest 50% cost, as offered by the firm’s chairman and managing director V. Venkat Raju, for setting up a skill training institute to make locals ready for skilled work by the time the operations begin in two years.

“Industries should be in consonance with local conditions and take up corporate social responsibility activities like building a health centre, school and ensure there is no pollution for the longevity of the enterprise. A long haul investment like this also needs emotional investment. Locals will then keep you in their hearts and it is a win-win situation,” he said.

Land acquisition

With regard to land acquisition at NIMZ about which farmers were restive, Mr. Rama Rao said 9,000 more acres have to be acquired with just 3,000 acres taken till date and directed the district administration to pay more than the ‘official’ price to farmers as the rates have risen to ₹8 lakh and more per acre in the area.

He thanked the villagers of Bardipur, Yalgaar and Challapally for allowing the industrial zone. MP B.B. Patil, MLA K. Manik Rao, TSIIC chairman G. Balamallu, IT & Industries secretary Jayesh Ranjan and others were present.

Crime Today News | Hyderabad


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