Monday, February 22, 2010

DRDO Directors Conference 2010

The 34th 3-day DRDO Directors’ Conference was inaugurated today at the Kothari Auditorium in DRDO Bhawan by Hon’ble Raksha Mantri Sh. AK Antony. The Guest of Honour was Hon’ble RRM Sh. MM Pallam Raju who also released a book, “DRDO Emerging as Technology Generator – A Recent Appraisal”. The inaugural function was also attended by the Chairman, Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence, Sh. Satpal Maharaj, COAS and Chairman, COSC General Deepak Kapoor and Defence Secretary Sh. Prakeep Kumar.

Hon’ble RM Sh. AK Antony said that Director’s Conference was an occasion for assessing the strength & weakness of DRDO and also chalking out future Roadmap. He lauded DRDO for its key role in development of many systems like INS Arihant, interceptor missiles, LCA, Akash MRSAM, MBT-Arjun, Divya Drishti etc. He said that private sector needs to be motivated to invest in Defence sector synergetically with public sector. DRDO will also need to be globally competitive, forward looking and receptive. He stressed that the govt. will continue to give full support for DRDO in terms of functional autonomy and resources.

Sh. MM Pallam Raju in his address message mentioned that DRDO has grown from a mere inspection agency in sixtees to technology giant spearheading flagship programs like IGMDP, LCA, MBT, AEW&C & EW Systems to fulfill the tactical and strategic needs of the country. He told that DRDO has two responsibilities namely Design and Integrate and Develop and nurture critical technologies. He further informed that DRDO has delivered many important systems to the Armed Forces for strengthening the strategic defence of the nation. He added that need of the hour is to transform India from a position of major importer of defence hardware to being world leader in state of art defence system & technologies. The DPP will significantly enhance the role of private industry in defence.

Sh. Satpal Maharaj appreciated the DRDO labs for carrying out excellent scientific work for the development of new technologies & systems. Hon’ble MP recalled his recent visits to some Delhi based DRDO labs and also DRDO pavilion at DefExpo 2010 and conveyed that he was highly impressed to know that DRDO has developed many technologies not only for the Armed Forces but also for the society. Hon’ble MP assured the support of parliamentarians for all DRDO’s endeavors.

Sh. Pradeep Kumar, Defence Secretary in his address conveyed that it is an important occasion for DRDO to take stock of accomplishments & future requirements to move forward in setting new goals for 2010 & years ahead. Sh. Kumar appreciated the role of DRDO for its significant contributions in major programmes. He also expressed his satisfaction for DRDO efforts in the area of futuristic technologies & systems such as sensor technology laser gyroscope, hypersonic propulsion, MEMS & nano-technology stealth technology and high energy laser for directed energy system and active armour.

General Deepak Kapoor in his keynote address spoke of 2 recent trends namely Internationalisation of R&D and globalisation of Innovation. There is a need for investments in R&D for encouraging technological innovations and adapting/absorbing technology for self-reliance. He also commented that the theme of the Directors’ conference namely “Collaboration in Global R&D Environment”, was very apt. He also cautioned that though collaboration allows access to greater resources and expertise, the aspect of Information Security has to be taken care of. He said that there is a need to increase the country’s R&D investment which is today only 0.9 % of our GDP. He also mentioned that world over private sector has proved to be reliable partner in the area of defence production. Hence, the private sector R&D of our country should be now leveraged for defence applications through the changes brought about in Defence Procurement Procedures.

Dr. VK Saraswat, SA to RM in his theme address thanked the Government for the extended support to DRDO. Dr. Saraswat talked about marked increase in the participation of private sector and also spoke on DRDO’s initiative to commercialize defence technology for civil sector through FICCI. He stressed that in today’s scenario of technology denial, global R&D collaboration is an effective way to bridge technology gaps and meeting timeframes.

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