Defense Current Affairs - 2020

GoI new scheme: Rs 400 crores for testing MSME Defense products

The Government of India is planning to launch a new scheme to test defense products manufactured by MSMEs. In order to achieve this, the Ministry of Defence has allocated Rs 400 crores.

Features of the scheme

The test units that are to function under the scheme will be installed in north and south defence corridors. Under the scheme, 75% of the cost of equipment for the testing units will be provided by the Central Government. The first test facility is to be launched for drones.

Significance

Government is working to increase its defence exports. This is being done to achieve the set target of Rs 90,000 crore by the end of 2019-20 financial year. To achieve this, several initiatives are being launched. To mention some, recently DRDO offered free access to its 450 patents.

The launch of new scheme will help in achieving the target. It will also aid the startups entering defence production.

The announcement was made in the Quality Assurance-Industry Conclave that was held in Chennai on November 23, 2019. In the conclave, L&T was provided with the “Green Channel Status” under the Green Channel Policy.

Green Channel Policy

The policy was launched by the Ministry of Defence. The policy provides eligibility criteria for firms to obtain Green Channel Status. It also defines the constitution of green channel committee, defect investigation, submission of bank Guarantee, etc.

The nodal agency implementing the policy is Directorate General of Supplies and Disposals (DGS&D)

Under the policy, when a firm gains the “Green Channel status” it can self-certify its products for their quality.

Indian Army launches “OASIS”

The Indian Army has begun to digitize its official records under its new programme called “OASIS”-Officers Automated Structures Information System. Under the programme, the records of the army officers are to be digitized. The software is to be hosted in the Army’s intranet.

About the Programme

  • The records were manually preserved by Manpower Planning Directorate before the launch of the software. The whole process of collecting the records, keeping track and checking the records were cumbersome.
  • Though new to the Army, a similar programme is already functioning for the Army Jawans.
  • The records are expected to be digitized in 5-6 months. Oasis will also carry the photographs of the dependents of the army officers. This is essential to prevent frauds where people create fake dependent cards.
  • When the officer retires, the whole data will migrate from Oasis to Retired Officers Digital Records Archive (RODRA). The RODRA holds the pension details of the officers.
  • The programme will also allow the army officers to check their salary slips and other details instantly. In far off border posts it takes many days for army officers to receive their records through mails. This programme helps to eliminate such difficulties.