By: Lt Col JS Sodhi (Retd), Editor, GSDN
Indian Army’s Eastern Command organised a spectacular and splendid display of the might of the Indian Military Industrial Complex through the East Tech 2023 in Guwahati, the capital of the Indian state of Assam on October 10-11, 2023.
East Tech 2023 was inaugurated by Mr Bimal Bora, the Minister of Industries and Commerce, Government of Assam in the presence of Lieutenant General RP Kalita, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Command, apart from a host of civilian and military dignitaries.
The motto of East Tech 2023 was “Soldering Through Self Reliance”, which was an apt and appropriate motto keeping in view the strides that India has made in the field of indigenous defence manufacturing as per the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi who gave the iconic slogans of Atmanirbhar Bharat and Make in India in 2014 and 2020 respectively.
Lieutenant General RP Kalita, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Command in his welcome address stated that the Eastern Command is the largest operational command of the Indian Army and it operates in all kinds of terrain. The Eastern Command has been hand-holding and supporting all the ventures of the indigenous defence manufacturers which will propel India to further make the latest and the best defence weapon systems. He also said that 200 firms are taking part in displaying their military hardware in East Tech 2023. The General Officer also added that East Tech 2022 which was held in Kolkata last year, was a resounding success and after that event, 37 products have been identified for use in the Eastern Command and the process is being taken forward.
Mr Bimal Bora, Industries and Commerce Minister, Government of Assam in his inauguration speech said that Assam is a conducive state for startups and MSMEs, where the domestic manufacturers of defence equipment should establish their manufacturing bases.
East Tech 2023 was a very well organised exhibition which saw large numbers of public witnessing the grand event which showcased the success of the Indian military industrial complex. On display were many latest weapon systems, some of which have yet to be inducted in the Indian Armed Forces.
Later in the day, a media interaction was held in which Lieutenant General RP Kalita, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, VSM, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Command answered various questions posed by the press. On a question by the author of this article, on whether the Indian Armed Forces are planning to open up the manufacturing of ammunition to the private sector as the manufacturing of hardware by the private sector has proved to be a success, the Army Commander said that the process is already on and certain trials are going on in the field formations.
East Tech 2023 was a great platform for the Army and the Industry to interact which will go a long way to enhance the combat potential of the Indian Army, which is rated as one of the finest armies of the world. The event conducted from October 10-11, 2023 was a resounding success and should pave the way for more collaborations. The Red Horns Division under the Eastern Command, which was the organising formation of East Tech 2023 did a fabulous and fantastic job in organising the exhibition and every minute detail was very well looked into, thereby showing the might of the Indian Army in every field that they partake a task in.