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Antony asks DRDO to share research projects with pvt agencies

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A file photo of Nag anti-tank missile

NEW DELHI (PTI): Against the backdrop of delay in providing critical technologies to armed forces, indian Defence Minister A K Antony has asked DRDO to focus on major programmes and give away the low-end research projects to the private sector.

"In order to be able to focus the DRDO's energy on mission mode projects, the task of carrying out low-end research must be given away to the private sector and the industries," he said at a meeting of the Consultative Committee of his ministry.

Antony said the premier research agency was spending nearly 80 per cent of its budget on mission mode projects.

These projects include the missile programmes and developing heavy equipment for the armed forces.

Several of Defence Research and Development Organisation projects such as the MBT Arjun, LCA Tejas, Nag anti-tank missile have seen several time and cost overruns.

The Minister also informed the meeting that DRDO has already implemented major recommendations of Rama Rao Committee.

"Based on these recommendations seven technology clusters have been created in the new organisational set-up of DRDO at different locations, each headed by an empowered Director General," he said.

The meeting also congratulated the DRDO for the Initial Operational Clearance II for the LCA, which is scheduled today at Bangalore.

The meeting was attended among others by Minister of State for Defence Jitendra Singh, Defence Secretary RK Mathur, DRDO chief Avinash Chander and Secretary (Defence Production) GC Pati.

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