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Old 5th November 2009, 07:29   #106
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The Neel / Anmol war game is reaching epic proportions in my mind.... please keep this thread going. I just wish BHPians stop picking on minute points/ verbatim. Everyday I love coming back and reading this.

I am no expert but I have a few points to raise though.
About the sad deaths of Scientists and death of military personnel.
Even though a life is a life and its loss is devastating to the near and dear ones and the firm they work on, I would like to draw a thin line of difference.
I would say both personnel are equally patriotic but,
one can be called an accidental death although they have an increased risk compared with a regular civilian. The military personnel on the other hand are willingly putting their life into the enemy combatants field. They might die or even worse be captured alive/ tortured/ maimed / may return after decades / spend their rest of life in captivity / and still may be murdered in cold blood. The chance of any of the above happening is very high in their life. But they are willingly doing it / risking their life /giving their life for us to enjoy peaceful life. This valour is uncomparable to any other job in this country. They deserve the greatest respect, greater than the best scientist even if he has won the nobel prize. Don't you think so. I think the least we can do is giving them the choice (within means) to arm themselves with. At least he would'nt feel cheated at his lowest moment when he has to face the devil.

Anmol's point about indigenization is very valid and compelling but I am at a loss in deciding where to draw the line between indigenously developed products and those bought off the shelf. Yes the military do keep changing their requirements and that's one of the reasons why the DRDO couldn't deliver in time and also had huge cost overruns. But should'nt those requirements change especially when some products couldn't be delivered in decades. It's be a national waste and stupidity to spend on something which will be obsolete in near future (I'm not sure whether the LCA aircraft belongs to this class). An obvious explanation is that the DRDO could not keep pace with the changing time.

Now why is it that the DRDO is always chasing the army in designs and product development. Why can't they predict what the army will need in say 15-20 years and start working on that now. Afterall they must be endowed with better brain power than the army sleuths. May be they can showcase a finished product first and ask the army to just test it before they even think about replacing their original ones. That calls for some forethought and money and this is where I think the westerners excell. That is also where incompetence of DRDO comes in and this is the area where we should all focus on. Research.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 5th November 2009, 17:05   #107
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Guys, may I request a gentleman-style debate? Let's not get hot under the collar please.
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Old 5th November 2009, 21:08   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Guys, may I request a gentleman-style debate? Let's not get hot under the collar please.
Using GTO's advice as a guideline, no more quotes!! But the story must go on..

Various points have been spoken about. Various points have been debated. But then what are the core issues? What is the main bone of contention? In this post, I shall dry and delve upon a few of these, of course, as I see it, which in all modesty might be a limitation. But why not give it a try?

Before I start, a small observation. An example cannot be a topic. It always has to be the other way around. So here goes..

This thread is titled Indigenously Developed Military vehicles. A few examples form the first posts. Then it became a question about the vehicles developed by DRDO, which is when the "fun" started. So, the core issues (as I see it) :

1. Is indigenisation required ? Absolutely yes. There can be no two ways about that. Any nation which is to be counted upon in the scheme of things has to be self reliant. Specially in high end technology. This is the type of technology which gives a nation its cutting edge and finds applications in high end products and defence equipment definitely falls into this category. A stronger a nation is, greater is it's sphere of influence. A sphere of influence which needs to be projected, accessed and protected. While diplomacy is considered the main tool of achieving this, there has been no strong nation to date which was able to do this without projecting it's strength. The armed forces are the primary means of doing just that.
Naturally, no armed force can be said to be truly strong till the time its equipment is the best. Equally important is whether the equipment can be relied upon at all times, specially in crisis situations. This is where indigenisation becomes crucial. Any equipment brought from a foreign vendor is susceptible to restrictions and embargoes as we found out after Pokhran II. But then, in this quest for indigenisation, can defence preparedness, which is directly related to it's equipment status be compromised? More on that later. Let us move on now, to other issues.

2.What are the hurdles that we have faced in the quest for indigenisation? Simply put, technology. As stated earlier, we require self sufficiency in high end technology. India has taken great strides in this aspect in certain areas. Space based technology is probably the pride of the Indian scientific community. However, defence technology is really a different cup of tea. I in no way suggest that space technology is inferior, just different. Defence technology is an amalgamation of sensor to shooter technology and everything that comes in between. These are highly specialty areas which require core competency. This is where I have my reservations about our scientific community. The reason for this is not very hard to fathom:
(a) India does not have a history of military scientific research - a core competency issue. The number of projects that have seen the light of day and the huge delays are testimony to this fact.
(b) Rome was not built in a day. So too, the Indian scientific community is unlikely to come out with miracles overnight.
(c) Core competency requires research at grass root level. It cannot be confined to central institutions, it has to go down to the college/university level. At this level, I have not heard of any new or inspiring news related to the defence sector coming from there.
(d) Any development and R&D is ultimately going to be funded by the industry. India today does not have a mature defence industry with variety and competition which in my opinion is a major impediment to R&D.
Am sure other Bhpians will add to this list..

3.Where do we go from here? This is perhaps the meat of the matter. And a highly contentious issue. While the quest for self sufficiency has to be continued, it is the way that it is being sought that I have reservations about. Is entrusting this quest to one organisation the best way forward? As I have already stated, it is a core competency issue. As such, the growth or building up of this competency has to be far more open. In USA, universities take a very big part in this process. The fact that major new weapons and weapon systems in America come from private players is testimony to this fact.In my mind, this is the correct way to go. Ad this is where that I feel an organisation like the DRDO (in it's present form) is an impediment.
Since the DRDO exists, it has to justify it's existence. How does it do that? By promising goods. It has to - to ensure it's very survivability. But then, does it have what it takes to deliver? This is where I have my reservations, and going by their delivery record, I do not think that I can be called biased. It tries to run when it hardly has what it takes to walk. But then is it a fault of the organisation per-se? I do not really think so. In the nation lacks basic technologies, there is no way that it will be accessible to the DRDO. But then, my point of contention is that DRDO does not seem to accept this fact and this is where I feel the DRDO looses it's game. Had the DRDO been more open to it's shortcomings, it would have probably been in a much better state now.
The DRDO is in a race to develop core technology. Only problem is that the technology it is striving to develop cannot be done from a zero state. You cannot develop multimode AI radars without having ever developed an AI radar-even one with STT. You cannot develop a FCS for a MBT without ever developing anything close to it earlier. In the same way as you cannot expect TATA to give you a car with Merc standards. So what should DRDO do?
Just what TATA did. Make an Indica, buy into a world class design firm, get help in the areas you are weak at. The world over, nations are realising that developing cutting edge defence technology is a hard cookie to handle, both economically and technologically. The Eurofighter and the JSF are both multinational projects for the same reason. The DRDO however seems to believe that they can do it all themselves, that without having the experience or the technology to do it. So while the quest for core technologies must go on, the way it is being sought now perhaps needs to change.
We need to first ensure that the basic technologies are available to us. For that we may need to go to others, buy it, get into a JV or hell, just steal it just like the Chinese!!


Will end here for now. Many important questions are yet unanswered. Specially the indigenisation and forces part. Will come later.
Looking forward to constructive inputs!!
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Old 6th November 2009, 02:59   #109
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@Neel

I agree with most of what you said, but it raises more questions

1) Is DRDO just a research and development organization? If so, who is responsible for mass production? I mean what is the basic difference between DRDO and ordinance factories in terms of army involvement/influence?

2) Say if TATA or L&T have access to a great technology could that also be called indigenous?

3) How is the general tender process different in purchasing of MBT? For eg: I recall there was an open tender for AJT and finally the airforce ended up buying the Hawk. Why is something like that not happening with Arjun MBT?

4) Rather than DRDO having a vision for army, I would rather the army had a wishlist and many arms manufacturers including DRDO worked towards creating technology demonstrators and then securing an order based on the TDs.

5) From an accountability standpoint who from the administration/finance side control what projects DRDO works on? Is this information available for public either freely or through right for information?
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Old 15th November 2009, 20:56   #110
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There's no accountability and no Danda in DRDO. Consider this- a fresher joins the DRDO as a Scientist B and if he doesn't consciously make any trouble he'll be a Scientist F in less than 20 yrs equivalent to A Brig of the Army.... and thats each one of them, thanks to a crazy thing called Flexible Complementing. In the Army not even 10% of any Course become Brigs. That's how much the DRDO is pampered.... plus foreign jaunts once a year or so absolutely no accountability and no targets to achieve .... research is an intangible thing and cant be quantified, the chaps say. Moral of the Story--- Make your kids join DRDO (if its still around when they grow up)
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Old 15th November 2009, 21:21   #111
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india is already helping american and australian joint manufacturing of a troop carrier multi purpose vehicle with 3 different payloads.

Last edited by Parm : 15th November 2009 at 21:36.
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Old 26th November 2009, 20:19   #112
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Was offline for the last 3 weeks as I was away on work.Back now so lets continue!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
@Neel

I agree with most of what you said, but it raises more questions

1) Is DRDO just a research and development organization? If so, who is responsible for mass production? I mean what is the basic difference between DRDO and ordinance factories in terms of army involvement/influence?
DRDO is primarily an organisation which is entrusted with the development of technology. However, they also tie up with other PSUs to enable manufacturing of successful designs as the manufacturing line is designed by them as well. The involvement of the Army is limited to just the issuing of the QRs and the testing of the products.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
2) Say if TATA or L&T have access to a great technology could that also be called indigenous?
A difficult one. If the technology has been totally been developed in house, then why not? Even if the technology is of a imported variety, but has been subsequently tweaked to meet our requirements, maybe it should qualify as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
3) How is the general tender process different in purchasing of MBT? For eg: I recall there was an open tender for AJT and finally the airforce ended up buying the Hawk. Why is something like that not happening with Arjun MBT?
The Defence Purchase Procedure is such thet, whenever the forces require any equipment the DRDO is first asked whether they can provide it to the forces. Thats why if they say yes, there is no further tendering. The problem comes when they say yes but deliver a lemon!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
4) Rather than DRDO having a vision for army, I would rather the army had a wishlist and many arms manufacturers including DRDO worked towards creating technology demonstrators and then securing an order based on the TDs.
Excellent point. That is just what is required!

Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
5) From an accountability standpoint who from the administration/finance side control what projects DRDO works on? Is this information available for public either freely or through right for information?
Don't know really!! But accountability is something that seems to be missing when it comes to the DRDO. The CAG has done some good work though.
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Old 28th November 2009, 23:32   #113
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The Defence Purchase Procedure is such thet, whenever the forces require any equipment the DRDO is first asked whether they can provide it to the forces. Thats why if they say yes, there is no further tendering. The problem comes when they say yes but deliver a lemon![/quote]

Hey man, DRDO has an orchard full, ain't no way those lemons gonna stop rolling for a hundred years.
.....and how come all's silent on the western front, pals?
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Old 29th November 2009, 06:10   #114
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
@Neel

Say if TATA or L&T have access to a great technology could that also be called indigenous?
Quote:
Originally Posted by neel385 View Post

A difficult one. If the technology has been totally been developed in house, then why not? Even if the technology is of a imported variety, but has been subsequently tweaked to meet our requirements, maybe it should qualify as well.
I think any technology that is available to us for which we do not have to pay a royalty and that we can manufacture ourselves withut relying on imports for parts can be called indigenous. Does it sound fair.
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Old 29th November 2009, 09:15   #115
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
2) Say if TATA or L&T have access to a great technology could that also be called indigenous?
L&T? somebody spoke about L&T? i work for L&T.
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Old 30th November 2009, 09:35   #116
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pamiboy View Post
I think any technology that is available to us for which we do not have to pay a royalty and that we can manufacture ourselves withut relying on imports for parts can be called indigenous. Does it sound fair.
I agree, i.e. technology that could be controlled by the govt. (army or some division of army) could be called indigenous. Since DRDO does not come under army control, the systems that they put together may or may not be viable for serial production by the army.

I think Neel pointed out in one of the earlier posts that some of the core technologies that we lack in india. Can't we atleast copy and improvise like the koreans or chinese do in defense and automobile industries?

Is/Was there any known attempts in this regard?
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Old 1st December 2009, 17:13   #117
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gshanky View Post
Can't we atleast copy and improvise like the koreans or chinese do in defense and automobile industries?

Is/Was there any known attempts in this regard?
Many actually. The LCA is almost a reverse engineered Mirage. The INSAS has its origins in the AK, M 16, H&K and a host others. The Arjun itself is a conglomeration of all the best tanks with the Leopard being the chief point of inspiration because of the Germans being involved in the early design process. The results of the attempts are somehow not that flattering, again because of our state in key technologies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by windiesel View Post
man, DRDO has an orchard full, ain't no way those lemons gonna stop rolling for a hundred years.
.....and how come all's silent on the western front, pals?
Agree on the lemons....about the silence on the western front...waiting for a fresh offensive before i launch my counter attack!! Someone light the fire....but let us remain constructive!!

Last edited by Zappo : 2nd December 2009 at 00:54. Reason: Consecutive posts merged. Please use the Multiquote button (marked ") to respond to multiple posts.
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Old 5th February 2010, 22:15   #118
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AntiTerrorist vehicle patrolling in mumbai

Is it mahindra axe or is this vehicle based on scorpio?

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Old 12th February 2010, 03:52   #119
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Does anyone know how does the new vehicle from BSF looks like? I read from the news that BSF has developed a new "Spy Fidayeen Bomb" vehicle. Couldn't get an image though? Any BSF / Army insiders here?
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Old 12th February 2010, 13:59   #120
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woah nice catch of that marksman in mumbai
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