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'Indian Def Ministry has spent 70 pc modernisation funds'


Howitzer gun. A Brahmand photo.

New Delhi (PTI): Ahead of the Union Budget, Defence Minister A K Antony has said his ministry has spent over 70 per cent of the modernisation funds allocated to it for the current fiscal.

The Defence Ministry has been sanctioned Rs 69,199 crore for capital expenditure outlay for finalising acquisition of major items such as 10 C-17 heavy-lift aircraft and 145 ultra-light Howitzers.

"Already by December 31, we had spent 66 per cent of the budget. This is a record. By January, it will be more than 70 per cent. From our side, we are spending all money for modernisation," he told reporters here.

The total budgetary allocation was pegged at Rs 1,64,415 crore for the Defence Ministry.

From the Rs 69,199 crore capital outlay, the army got Rs 18,986 crore, Navy Rs 5,688 crore, naval fleet Rs 7,320 crore and Air Force Rs 30,699 crore.

India is looking to spend over USD 100 billion in defence procurements in the next five years with several big ticket items such as six conventional submarines and 126 Medium-Multirole Combat Aircraft (M-MRCA) to be procured by it.

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