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Govt committed to self-sufficiency in defence sector: Parrikar

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NEW DELHI (PTI): 'Make In India' is a long drawn exercise but the Government is committed to bring about self-sufficiency in defence sector, government told the Rajya Sabha Tuesday.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said the government was stressing on 'Make In India' in defence acquisition and "we are promoting" it in almost all defence acquisitions, he said.

Government has increased the defence budget by 9.87 per cent to Rs 2.46 lakh crore for the next fiscal as compared to the revised estimates of Rs 2.22 lakh crore for 2014-15 as it pushes 'Make in India' initiative to curtail over-dependence on imports.

Parrikar said the government's decision to increase FDI cap in the defence sector to 49 per cent will bring in technology.

To a question if the fund allocations for defence were adequate, he said, "in principle, nothing is adequate in defence of country," but if the rupee is spent wisely it could do more.

He said that at January-end, the expenditure under the defence service was 78.36 per cent of Rs 2.22 lakh crore allocation for the current fiscal. The expenditure was 99.92 per cent of the allocation in 2013-14.

In his budget speech, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had said the government was working towards self-sufficiency through the Make in India programme in defence equipment including aircraft.

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