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At Global Technology Summit, Jaishankar Highlights India’s Digital Public Infrastructure Success

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At Global Technology Summit, Jaishankar Highlights India’s Digital Public Infrastructure Success


New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar outlined India’s digital progress on Monday, emphasising the success of the Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) in democratising technology.

At the 8th Global Technology Summit (GTS) in the national capital, Jaishankar pointed out that India is rapidly catching up in technology adoption, citing the massive volume of UPI transactions as evidence of how readily people embrace technology when it becomes available.

“Effort in building and delivering on Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) is what the Prime Minister calls democratising technology. Today, the average person not only uses it but also relates to it and of course, the figures that we like to tout out the massive volume of UPI transactions show how readily people take to technology once it is on offer,” the EAM said.

Jaishankar acknowledged India’s journey in technology, noting that the era of reforms initiated three decades ago did not necessarily align with the era of technology. Despite playing catch-up, he highlighted the transformative impact of technology on public policy, governance, and national security in the last decade.

“India is playing catch up in many areas because while our era of reforms started three decades ago, the era of reform was not necessarily the era of technology,” he said.

Responding to a question about re-globalisation, Jaishankar stressed a nuanced view, stating that a globalised economy should not be characterised by central production and passive consumption. Instead, he emphasised the importance of dispersed production in a truly globalised economy.

“A globalised economy doesn’t mean production gets done at the centre and everyone else is a consumer. A globalised economy means dispersed production,” Jaishankar added.

The EAM also touched upon the enduring relationship between India and Russia, spanning close to six decades. Addressing perceived challenges in the relationship, he emphasised its historical significance and its role in saving India on multiple occasions.

“We have a relationship with Russia and it is not a relationship that happened in an instant. It is a relationship of close to 60 years… I see a problem defined in a way as though somewhere there’s some handicap that India has by having this relationship,” Jaishankar said.

He also justified the strong ties between the two nations, citing geopolitical factors and the first principle of the politics of “your neighbour’s neighbour” on the Eurasian landmass.

“But this relationship has saved us many times… Partly, there is a lot of history and force that have been defining aspects of the India-Russia relationship. If you look at the Eurasian landmass, it makes sense that India and Russia would have strong relations because it is in accordance with the first principle of politics of your neighbour’s neighbour,” the EAM noted.

Turning to the global stage, Jaishankar highlighted the growing interest of many countries in mobility discussions, recognising the interconnectedness of technology and mobility in today’s world.

“Many more countries are interested in mobility discussions because the world of technology is also accelerating the world of mobility. I know that there’s a lot that you will all be discussing at the moment,” he said.

He also expressed satisfaction that responsible artificial intelligence (AI) was a subject of debate at the summit, praising the Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship of India, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, as the right person to address AI concerns from the government’s perspective.

“One particular area of interest is the debate about responsible artificial intelligence, and I was very pleased today when I was in Parliament to learn from my colleague Rajeev Chandrasekhar that he will be speaking to you about it tomorrow or the day after that. He is absolutely the right person where the government is concerned about that,” the EAM also said.

In conclusion, Jaishankar reflected on the historical march of technology as the driver of human progress.

“We all know that the march of technology is the history of human progress and every era has its own particular set of technological advancements that have defined it. We also know that the history of the world, the balances of power, and the making and unmaking of nations and civilisations are all, in one way or another, a reflection of how technology has grown,” he said.

He emphasised the policy challenges associated with technology, including the need for regulation and managing the competitive aspects.

The minister’s comprehensive address at the GTS showcased India’s technological strides, its evolving approach to reforms, and its global perspective on the challenges and opportunities presented by advancing technologies.

“In terms of the policy challenges, there is the need to regulate technology because many technologies also come with their downsides and we have seen that expressed in world affairs through regimes, treaties and rules, and there are some that are very obvious, as we’ve seen,” he added.

The eighth edition of the Global Technology Summit (GTS) is being held in New Delhi from December 4-6.

The Global Technology Summit (GTS) is India’s flagship event on geo-technology, co-hosted by the Policy Planning and Research Division of the Ministry of External Affairs and Carnegie India.

The theme of this year’s Summit is “Geopolitics of Technology,” MEA said in the press release. More than 40 public sessions, keynote addresses, ministerial addresses, panel discussions, book launches, and other related events will be held during the Global Technology Summit (GTS).

Speakers and participants, including policymakers, industry experts, academics, technocrats and innovators from India and around the world, will attend the summit. Ministers and senior government officials from several nations, including India, the US, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Germany, Sierra Leone, Brazil and Lithuania.





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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’

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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’


NEW DELHI: India tested its nuclear capable K-4 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), designed to have a strike range of 3,500 km, for the second time in six days on Friday. The missile test, as the one conducted on January 19, was undertaken from an undersea platform in the shape of a submersible pontoon off the coast of Andhra Pradesh according to a report by Rajat Pandit of TOI.

The solid-fuelled K-4 missile is being developed by DRDO to arm the country’s nuclear-powered submarines in the shape of INS Arihant and its under-development sister vessels. INS Arihant, which became fully operational in November 2018 to complete India’s nuclear triad, is currently armed with the much shorter K-15 missiles with a 750 km range.

“The K-4 is now virtually ready for its serial production to kick-off. The two tests have demonstrated its capability to emerge straight from underwater and undertake its parabolic trajectory,” said a source.

India has the land-based Agni missiles, with the over 5,000-km Agni-V inter-continental ballistic missile now in the process of being inducted, and fighter jets jury-rigged to deliver nuclear weapons. But INS Arihant gives the country’s deterrence posture much more credibility because nuclear-powered submarines armed with nuclear-tipped missiles are considered the most secure, survivable and potent platforms for retaliatory strikes.

Once the K-4 missiles are inducted, they will help India narrow the gap with countries like the US, Russia and China, which have over 5,000-km range SLBMs. The K-4 missiles are to be followed by the K-5 and K-6 missiles in the 5,000-6,000 km range class.

The 6,000-ton INS Arihant, which is propelled by an 83 MW pressurised light-water reactor at its core, in turn, is to be followed by INS Arighat, which was launched in 2017. The next generation of nuclear submarines, currently called S-4 and S-4*, will be much larger in size.





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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%

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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%


India has received clearance to upgrade 84 Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets, which will result in 78% indigenization after the upgrade

In a significant step towards bolstering its military might with indigenously developed technology, India is poised to witness its Russian-origin Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets evolve into a domestic platform. Speaking at a recent lecture.

The upgrade program is being led by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in partnership with the Indian Air Force and other partners. The upgrade is expected to cost US$7.5 billion.

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) granted Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for the upgrade. The upgrade is part of India’s efforts to improve the capabilities of its primary fighter aircraft, it refers to as the “Super Sukhoi”.

This initiative is a part of a larger effort by the Indian Air Force to modernize its ageing fleet. Air Chief Marshal Chaudhari asserted the critical role of an offensive air force as demonstrated in current global conflicts and emphasized India’s move towards an indigenized arsenal. To this end, the IAF has been proactive, from upgrading its Mirage 2000 to enhancing its MiG-29 fleet.

In summary, the IAF’s commitment to updating their combat forces with the latest technology, including shifting to fifth-generation fighter jets, ensures operational preparedness and a strong deterrence capability. The gradual indigenization of its air fleet marks a pivotal shift in India’s defence landscape, reducing dependency on foreign imports and fostering technological sovereignty.





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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace

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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace


According to unconfirmed reports, Armenia is a top contender for an export order for Akash SAM system manufactured by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).

While there is no official confirmation because of the sensitivities involved, documents suggest that the order for the same has already been placed the report further added.
There are nine countries, in turn, which have shown interest in the indigenously-developed Akash missile systems, which can intercept hostile aircraft, helicopters, drones and subsonic cruise missiles at a range of 25-km. They are Kenya, Philippines, Indonesia, UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Vietnam and Algeria reported TOI.

The Akash export version will also be slightly different from the one inducted by the armed forces. The 100-km range air-to-air Astra missiles, now entering production after successful trials from Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, also have “good export potential”, said sources.

Akash is a “tried, tested and successfully inducted systems”. Indian armed forces have ordered Akash systems worth Rs 24,000 crore over the years, and MoD inked a contract in Mar 2023 of over Rs 9,100 crores for improved Akash Weapon System

BDL is a government enterprise under the Ministry of Defence that was established in 1970. BDL manufactures surface-to-air missiles and delivers them to the Indian Army. BDL also offers its products for export.

Akash Weapon System

The AWS is a Short Range Surface to Air Missile (SRSAM) Air Defence System, indigenously designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). In order to meet aerial threats, two additional Regiments of AWS with Upgradation are being procured for Indian Army for the Northern borders. Improved AWS has Seeker Technology, Reduced Foot Print, 360° Engagement Capability and improved environmental parameters.

The project will give a boost to the Indian missile manufacturing industry in particular and the indigenous defence manufacturing ecosystem as a whole. The project has overall indigenous content of 82% which will be increased to 93% by 2026-27.

The induction of the improved AWS into the Indian Army will increase India’s self-reliance in Short Range Missile capability. This project will play a role in boosting the overall economy by avoiding outgo of precious foreign exchange to other countries, increasing employment avenues in India and encouraging Indian MSMEs through components manufacturing. Around 60% of the project cost will be awarded to the private industry, including MSMEs, in maintaining the supply chain of the weapon system, thereby creating large scale of direct and indirect employment.





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