New Delhi: The upcoming Defence Corridor in India’s largest state, Uttar Pradesh, will not only host bigger companies manufacturing drones and missiles, but also firms that make cartridges for small arms used by the security forces such as assault rifles, sniper rifles, and carbines, frames for polymer frame pistols and safety equipment.
Two companies — Delta Combat Systems Limited and Werywin Defence Private Limited — are investing $30 million (Rs 215 crore) in the Jhansi node of the Defence Corridor to set up their units for manufacturing small arms.
“The Delta Combat Systems Limited has been allotted 15 hectares of land to set up its plant at the cost of Rs 150 crore ($20 million). It will make cartridges for assault, sniper and INSAS rifles as well as CQB (Close Quarter Battle) carbines and other weapons being used by the armed forces,” a statement from the Uttar Pradesh government said today.
The CQB carbines are very effective, as they can hit a target within the range of 200 metres. INSAS rifle, which is made on the lines of AK-47, was extensively used during the 1999 Kargil war.
The Yogi Adityanath government has already allotted land to companies for making BrahMos missiles and drones in Lucknow and Aligarh nodes of the Defence Corridor respectively and the construction is expected to start soon.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the creation of a Defence Corridor in Uttar Pradesh during the Investors’ Summit in Jan. 2018. Subsequently, the Uttar Pradesh government decided to establish the corridor covering Lucknow, Kanpur, Chitrakoot, Jhansi, Agra and Aligarh districts.
It was followed by signing of Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) worth Rs 50,000 crore ($6.8 billion) with domestic and foreign companies manufacturing defence products during the DefExpo held in Lucknow in Feb. 2020.
According to officials, 29 companies had submitted their proposals to the Uttar Pradesh government for setting up their factories in the Aligarh node, of which 19 reputed firms have been allotted 55.40 hectares of land by the Uttar Pradesh Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA).
The companies will be establishing their plants at the cost of Rs 1245.75 crore ($169 million). Similarly, 11, six and eight companies had submitted their proposals for setting up their factories in Lucknow, Jhansi and Kanpur nodes respectively.
The most prominent companies setting up their factories in the Aligarh node of the corridor are Allen & Alvan Private Limited and Encore Research LLP, which will be making the most sophisticated drones. The companies are investing Rs 550 crore ($75 million) to set up their plants.
According to UPEIDA officials, the corridor will not only give Uttar Pradesh a new identity, but also lead India towards self-reliance in defence equipment production. The Defence Corridor will also see many international firms set up their plants for manufacturing advanced weapons, they said.