The government's commitment to peace is just as strong as its commitment to protecting its people and territory, and for this, necessary measures to equip the armed forces will be taken, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday.
Inaugurating the Defence Expo in Thiruvidanthai in Tamil Nadu, Modi said the Defence Procurement Procedure was revised with many specific provisions for stimulating the growth of the domestic defence industry.
"Our commitment to peace is just as strong as our commitment to protecting our people and our territory. For this we are ready to take all necessary measures to equip our armed forces, including through the establishment of a strategically independent defence industrial complex," he said.
The Prime Minister also said that while in May 2014, the total number of defence export permission granted stood at 118, for a total value of $577 million, in less than four years, 794 more export permissions were issued, for a total value of over $1.3 billion.
"There was a time when critical issue of defence preparedness was hampered by policy paralysis. We have seen the damage of such laziness, incompetence or perhaps some hidden motives, can cause to the nation. Not now, not anymore, never again," Modi said.
In an apparent reference to the scrapped Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) deal, the Prime Minister said he did not want to spend 10 years in discussions without any tangible outcome.