Hyderabad: Talking about the Centre’s decision on the Tatra trucks, Union defence minister Manohar Parrikar said during a conference organised by the Forum for Integrated National Security, “ I am not saying blacklisting should not be there.”
He further added, “If someone has committed a serious crime, we will not spare them. But imagine a situation where companies get blacklisted over some small issues.”
The defence ministry had partially revoked the ban on Tatra trucks last year. Mr Parrikar said the ban had to be revoked since it affected supply chain issues and affected supply of spare parts. “More than 10 per cent of the trucks stopped because of lack of spare parts.
A lot of systems got stuck because the trucks were not available. Nation and defence forces should be first priority. Of course, the ban is not fully withdrawn,” Mr Parrikar explained about Tatra trucks. He also faulted the previous UPA regime for complicating the defence equipment acquisition process “in the last 10 years”. He said all the complications would be ironed out in the future.
The defence minister also took a dig at the DRDO saying it needed to emulate the Indian Space Research Organisation. “In space technology, the world is looking to us. We have to reach that position in defence also,” he said. He also said that the country should achieve self-reliance in the defence sector. “Technology provided by other countries may not be adaptable to our conditions like that in Siachen. So we need self-reliance. We should be in a position where we are the exporters,” he said.
Mr Parrikar said heavy dependence on some countries for defence technology could also let foreign policy be dictated by them. It is noteworthy that India, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is deepening its defence ties with the United States.