Defence Ministry Current Affairs - 2019
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The Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) framework under the Defence Ministry is envisaging setting up of independent Defence Innovation Hubs (DIHs) where innovators can get information about needs and feedback from the Armed Services directly and create solutions for India’s major defence platforms. Defence Innovation Hubs are aimed at attracting more innovators to work for the defence sector in India.
Guidelines for Setting up of Defence Innovation Hubs
The Framework to Fund Defence Innovation Hubs under iDEX has been approved by the Board of Defence Innovation Organisation (DIO). The framework prescribes the following minimum criterion for setting up Defence Innovation Hubs: Any Central Government recognized Incubator including but not limited to:
- Department of Science and Technology (DST) recognized Incubators.
- Atal Innovation Mission, NITIAayog created Atal Incubation Centers (AICs) and Established Incubation Centers (EICs).
- Ministry of MSME recognized incubators.
- Any other incubator recognized or funded through any Central government scheme.
- The incubator located in districts mentioned in the list of SME clusters hosted by the Ministry of MSME in collaboration with UNIDO.
- Incubator / Hub promoted by local industry associations.
The Defence Innovation Organisation set up under iDEX has announced setting up of two DIHs in Tamil Nadu (Coimbatore) and Maharashtra (Nashik).
Defence Innovation Organisation
Defence Innovation Organisation is a not for profit company under section 8 of the Companies Act. The Defence Innovation Organisation is funded by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL). The headquarters of the Defence Innovation Organisation is located at Bengaluru.
Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) scheme
Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) scheme aims to create an ecosystem to foster innovation and technology development in Defence and Aerospace by engaging Industries including MSMEs, Startups, Individual Innovators, R&D institutes and Academia and provide them grants/funding and other support to carry out R&D which has good potential for future adoption for Indian defence and aerospace needs. The Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) functions as the executive arm of the Defence Innovation Organisation.
Union Defence Ministry has enhanced financial powers of three vice chiefs of the armed forces from Rs 100 crore to Rs 500 crore i.e. five times. This comes after vice chiefs were granted additional powers to carry out specific procurement to ensure operational preparedness in March 2018.
The decision to enhance financial powers of three vice chiefs of the armed forces was taken to give fillip to procurement of arms and ammunition and upgrade of defence preparedness. With new delegation, Vice Chiefs will be now able to exercise financial powers upto five times more than existing powers with enhanced ceiling.