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No move to privatise Ordnance Factory

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Union Minister Arun Jaitley’s clarification to Tiruchi MP P. Kumar

Even as some of the elected representatives and employees unions have been up in arms against the Centre for the alleged move to privatise the Ordnance Factory, Tiruchi, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who held additional charge of the Defence Ministry until recently, has said that there is no such proposal.

In a recent communication to P. Kumar, MP, Tiruchi, he said that under the government’s ‘Make in India’ initiatives, the Defence Ministry had taken a series of initiatives to encourage participation of both public and private sectors in defence manufacturing, so that substantive self-reliance was achieved in defence production.

Referring to Mr. Kumar raising the issue in Parliament under Rule 377, seeking to review the decision “to privatise four small arms factories,” Mr. Jaitley said that “in order to focus on the core activities as well as to make optimal utilisations of the available resources, the Department in consultation with stakeholders has categorised 143 items of OFB (Ordnance Factory Board) as non-core items, which are to be sourced from other vendors.”

No proposal

“As regards privatisation of small arms factories, including Ordnance Factory, Tiruchi, under Ordnance Factory Board, I would like to reiterate that at present there is no proposal to privatise them,” the Union Minister said in the communication, copies of which were made available to the media by the MP here.

Source:The Hindu dt 16/9/2017

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