Save Medak ordnance factory from privatisation, Harish urges Rajnath
HYDERABAD: Finance minister T. Harish Rao has appealed to Union defence minister Rajnath Singh to halt privatisation of ordnance factories, including the Medak ordnance factory.
He contended that these facilities play a critical role in national defence and their privatisation could have severe ramifications as regards the country's security besides the possibility of thousands of those who work in them losing their livelihood.
In his appeal, Rao expressed concern that privatising seven public sector organisations in the defence sector could lead to competition that could hinder development of new weapons and undermine the ‘Make in India’ initiative.
He also noted that the Medak factory had sufficient work for its staff in the last financial year, but lack of work in the current fiscal could lead to the factory being declared a ‘sick unit’, resulting in the loss of employment for 2,500 directly and 5,000 people indirectly.
Responding to a request from the Ayudha Karmagara Telangana Employees Samakhya, Rao presented six demands to Rajnath Singh. They include rolling back the decision to privatise defence sector enterprises, strengthening research departments, modernising the mission, providing skill training to employees, simplifying administration and procurement procedures and giving work orders to the ordnance factory in line with the military’s requirements.
The appeal comes amidst growing concerns about the impact of privatisation on India's defence sector, with some experts warning that such a move could lead to a loss of strategic autonomy and put the country's security at risk.