Monday, November 13, 2006

Harsh spotlight on DRDO

Update: Here are the links.

1. Big picture
2. Missiles
3. Main Battle Tank
4. Combat aircraft
5. Who audits the DRDO ?
6. DRDO's human resources
7. Some success stories
8. Advice from V.K. Aatre, DRDO's ex-Chief

Editorial (13 November).

Column by Vinay Shankar who was "director-general, artillery, during the Kargil conflict" (15 November).

Milind Deora's column comparing DRDO with DARPA of the US (21 November 2006)

The Indian Express has an ongoing series of articles (links in the sidebar) by Shiv Aroor and Amitav Ranjan strongly criticising the functioning of Defence Research and Development Organization. The immediate provocation is DRDO's request for an "assured grant' of Rs. 10,000 crores (about 2.2 billion US dollars) every year for the next 15 years.

Using parliamentary testimony (and leaked reports), Aroor and Ranjan pound on the organization relentlessly for sloth, drift, delay, cost overruns, and misleading the country (with its slogans on self-reliance). They cite examples from DRDO's flagship programs: "the ... guided missile programme, the Arjun tank, the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA Tejas), the Samyukta communication system and Kaveri jet engine."

This sentence sums up the entire series of articles:

... if there’s one thing this behemoth of 50 laboratories with a staff of about 33,000 has developed to almost perfection, it’s this: wrapping itself around the flag to hide a record of delay and non-delivery in virtually all major weapons programmes.


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Thanks to a good friend for the e-mail alert.


  1. Doctor Bruno said...

    Nothing amusing.... considering the fact that the paper is Indian Express

    They want to dismantle DRDO and buy weapons from MNCs !!

    By the way, from the article
    //that the missiles have been successfully tested five times. What it conveniently leaves unsaid is the fact that this is out of at least 10 tests. //

    5 out of 10 is not bad....
    I will consider this as a glass half full.... If some one finds that as glass half empty, that is HIS Problem.

    Defense is something where money is secondary. Safety and reliance is first

    Any kid knows that a country will not sell a plane that cannot be traced by their radars

    And they will sell a radar that will not trace their advanced plane

    It is high time that these "self proclaimed architects of Indian finance" stop meddling with defense programmes and ask that to be outsourced.