Defence Ministry plans DRDO overhaul

NEW DELHI (TIP): After the removal of Avinash Chander as Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) chief, the Defence Ministry plans to overhaul the military research establishment by creating two separate posts of Secretary, Department of Defence Research and Scientific Adviser to the defence minister.

The secretary would be ex-officio director general of the DRDO. The post of the secretary would be senior to the post of the scientific adviser.

“We are thinking about splitting the dual position of the DRDO chief as Scientific Adviser to the Raksha Mantri. There should be two separate people for these two roles. Nothing has been finalised as yet,” a senior government official said. After Chander was suddenly sacked two days ago, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said he recommended the missile scientist’s ouster. But the minister maintained that he came to know about the sacking order from the media. Talking to journalists last month, Parrikar stated he would thoroughly review the functioning of the DRDO that came under criticism from Prime Minister Narendra Modi for its failure to deliver in time and the laid-back attitude.

One of the transformation plans is to give more financial authority to the directors general who head seven clusters of laboratories working in the areas of naval systems; aeronautical systems; armament and combat engineering systems; missile and strategic systems; electronic and communication systems; life sciences and robotics; and computational systems.

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