It would be fair to say that the Defence Research & Development Organization (DRDO) has contributed to substantively augmenting the technological capabilities of Indian industry through various policy initiatives and technology transfer. At the moment, DRDO is taking things further with specific steps under the broader rubric of government policies such as ‘Make in India’, ‘Start-up India’, ‘Stand up India’, ‘Skill India’ and ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. Let us therefore look at various mechanisms put in place by DRDO to aid the development of a wider and deeper military-industrial base in India. This will serve as a primer for any potential industry participant who wants to work closely with DRDO.
DRDO Policies in Support of Industries
The existing Policies/ Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)/ Guidelines of DRDO to support industries are listed below:
Transfer of Technology (ToT): DRDO provides the relevant ‘know-how’ in the form of Technology Transfer Document (TTD) and handholding support to Indian industry. Technology is transferred to Development cum Production Partner (DcPP)/ Development Partner (DP) / Production Agency (PA) without any ToT Fee and to other industries with a one-time ToT Fee @5% of total project sanction cost. Royalty is not charged on net sales to Indian Armed Forces and other Govt Departments. 2% royalty is applicable for sales in Indian commercial market and exports. More details are available at website https://drdo.gov.in/transfer-technologies.
Technology Development Fund (TDF): A corpus fund of Rs. 100 Cr. has been created to enable Indian industries especially MSMEs, for indigenisation of defence products, sub systems and components. The fund may also be utilised for developing new technologies as required by DRDO, Services and DPSUs. The cost of each project under TDF can be up to Rs 10 Cr. The industry can get funding up to 90% of the project cost. Details are available at website https://tdf.drdo.gov.in.
DRDO Patents for Indian Industry: All patents and relevant intellectual publications are available on DRDO website. These can be used by Indian industry free of cost. Details are available at website https://drdo.gov.in/ipr. For any further support, Director ER&IPR, DRDO HQs may be approached for working out the modalities.
Development and Production Partner: DRDO engages industry as Development cum Production Partner (DcPP)/Development Partners (DP)/ Production Agency (PA) during execution of it’s projects and programmes. The selection of industries is carried out based on procurement rules and procedures. For more details Industry may approach website https://drdo.gov.in/headquarter-directorates/finance-and-materials-management.
- Testing Support: DRDO supports Indian industry during their technology and products development by extending Test Facilities (https://www.drdo.gov.in/test-facilities) and Proof & Field Firing Ranges (http://www.makeinindiadefence.gov.in). This assures development of high-quality defence products.
- Evaluation and Certification Support: The following certification services are provided by DRDO to industry:
- CEMILAC provides the certification support to industry for military airworthiness. CEMILAC may be contacted at https://drdo.gov.in/labs-and-establishments/centre-military-airworthiness-certification-cemilac.
- SAG, Delhi provides testing and certification support for IT and crypto products developed by industries on request of Services. SAG may be contacted at https://drdo.gov.in/labs-and-establishments/scientific-analysis-group-sag.
- Export Support: A Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) is promulgated to assist Indian Industry to export products developed with DRDO support. An export compendium, comprising of DRDO products having potential of export, has also been prepared along with details of manufacturing industries. Industry may approach website https://drdo.gov.in/transfer-technologies.
- Technological and Scientific Support: Technological and scientific support will be provided to industry by DRDO on need basis. The interested industry may contact DRDO at https://drdo.gov.in/headquarter-directorates/contact-us/industry-interface-technology-management.
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