No economy is an island “entire of itself”, as Donne might have said. And self-reliance (or atmanirbhar Bharat) is not autarky. At the height of the Nehruvian drive for self-reliance, India was importing everything from machinery and capital to technology and weaponry, even pens. As indigenisation efforts stalled, the import dependence grew. Even today the most “self-reliant” defence and space projects have significant import content. The Tejas fighter aircraft has engines from General Electric, while the Indian Space Research Organisation’s website says the import content in its satellites is 50-55 per cent. The country’s nuclear power stations are critically dependent on imported uranium, and of course there is the 85 per cent import dependence when it comes to oil.
TO READ THE FULL STORY, SUBSCRIBE NOW NOW AT JUST RS 249 A MONTH.
Already a premium subscriber? LOGIN NOW
SUBSCRIBE TO INSIGHTS
What you get on Business Standard Premium?
- Unlock 30+ premium stories daily hand-picked by our editors, across devices on browser and app.
- Full access to our intuitive epaper - clip, save, share articles from any device; newspaper archives from 2006.
- Curated newsletters on markets, personal finance, policy & politics, start-ups, technology, and more.
- Pick your 5 favourite companies, get a daily email with all news updates on them.
- 26 years of website archives.
- Preferential invites to Business Standard events.