The Indian Air Force (IAF) is a technologically advanced and extremely potent force and the recent offensive strikes on terror outfits in the neighbourhood showed the reach and lethality of this formidable arm of the armed forces, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday.

Addressing a long-pending demand of private industries to provide a level playing field in defence manufacturing, he announced that test facilities of the government and the Services would soon be opened for the sector.

“We have just approved a proposal to provide the test facilities of the government to the private sector after incorporating the comments of the stakeholders participating in indigenous manufacturing,” Mr. Singh said at a seminar on indigenisation and modernisation of the IAF, jointly organised by the Air Force and the Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers.

A formal order that would remove the bottlenecks in the way of using test facilities by private entities would be issued, he added.

Of late, Indian industries had been manufacturing bigger military platforms but there were no test ranges to evaluate and improve the systems, forcing them to take the hardware abroad.

The defence products list had been revised for the purpose of issuing licences under the Industry Development and Regulation Act and most of the components, parts, sub-systems and testing and production equipment had been removed from it.
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