Defence Ministry to rope in industry to leverage Artificial Intelligence

• The Defence Ministry will soon come up with a detailed roadmap on working closely with the industry on leveraging Artificial Intelligence – latest technology that emphasizes on the creation of intelligent machines that work and react like humans – in Armed Forces.

• A task force, headed by Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran to study use and application of AI in the military, recently gave its recommendations, which has been converted into a Draft Executive Order. Consultation is underway with different wings of the Defence Ministry.

• The Ministry has asked Defence PSUs to come up with suggestions as to where they can start leveraging in AI. Developing AI capabilities is an absolutely essential part of leading the next generation innovation thrust.

• Ministry has already started the process of working closely with start-ups to leverage their strength in Defence and aerospace sector. Eleven challenges have been given to them, and for each challenge, there is a grant of Rs 1.5 crore available for developing prototypes.

• Nearly Rs 60,000 crore worth of spares, components and sub-assemblies are imported and there is a huge opportunity to make them in India. To support the local industry, the Ministry will notify any part or component that is required by Defence PSU and Armed Forces. Indian industries capable of producing it under Public Procurement Order will be given preference.

• India is among the top five countries having start-ups but they are mostly in sectors like electronics, IT, IoT while Defence and aerospace start-ups are not there.

Creating ecosystem

• In Israel, outside the top universities, every house and flat is a technology/start-up centre bringing new technology. India too has talent but the ecosystem is missing here. While the technologies in Israel is translated in financial value quickly while this is not happening in India.

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