Bharat Shakti exercise tests tri-service fire power, showcases indigenous defence equipment

Pokhran once again became witness of the triveni of India’s aatmnirbharta, self-confidence and its glory: PM Modi at Bharat Shakti

March 12, 2024 04:40 pm | Updated 09:41 pm IST - Pokhran

Prime Minister Narendra Modi witnesses the Exercise Bharat Shakti, in Pokhran, Rajasthan, on March 12, 2024.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi witnesses the Exercise Bharat Shakti, in Pokhran, Rajasthan, on March 12, 2024. | Photo Credit: PTI

Aatmanirbharta for India’s defence needs is the guarantee of self-confidence in the armed forces, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday as he witnessed a combined demonstration of indigenous defence equipment in the form of a tri-services live fire and manoeuvre exercise Bharat Shakti at Pokhran in Rajasthan.

“Today, once again Pokhran became a witness of the triveni of India’s Aatmnirbharta, self-confidence and its glory. It is the same Pokhran that witnessed India’s nuclear test and today we are witnessing the power of strength from indigenisation,” Mr. Modi said addressing the gathering.

Mr. Modi noted that in the last 10 years, equipment worth ₹6 lakh crore has been procured from Indian companies. During this period defence production of the country has doubled to more than ₹1 lakh crore and more than 150 defence startups have started and defence forces have given them orders worth ₹1800 crore, he noted. “The idea of Viksit Bharat is unimaginable without aatmanirbhar Bharat”, he said underscoring the need to reduce dependence on others.

Also read:IAF showcases its weapons arsenal, firepower at Pokhran

Noting that the exercise was a step towards this resolution, Mr. Modi said that India is laying emphasis on aatmanirbharta from edible oils to fighter jets adding that the success of aatmnirbharta in defence can be seen with India’s tanks, cannons, fighter jets, helicopters and missile systems which reflect India’s strength. “We are experiencing the flight of Made in India with arms and ammunition, communication devices, cyber and space. This is indeed Bharat Shakti”, he stated.

Listing out the steps for making India self-reliant in the defence sector, Mr. Modi mentioned policy reforms and roping in the private sector and encouragement of Micro, Medium and Small Enterprises and startups in the field. Exercise Bharat Shakti simulated realistic, synergised, multi-domain operations displaying integrated operational capabilities of the Indian armed forces to counter threats across land, air, sea, cyber, and space domains, a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said.

Several top-line equipment development and license manufactured in India were put through paces, over a 50 minute duration, including T-90 (IM) tanks, Dhanush and Sarang artillery guns, Akash surface to air system, logistics drones, robotic mules, light combat aircraft and advanced light helicopter among others.

Bharat Shakti will showcase the shock and awe that the three Services seek to achieve in an operational situation by employing the manoeuvre and fighting capabilities effectively, Maj Gen C. S. Mann, Additional Director General of the Army Design Bureau had said briefing the media on Saturday.

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