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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday shed light on the Modi government’s emphasis and focus on attaining ‘atmanirbharta’ in the defence sector and revealed how a marked shift in focus, as compared to previous regimes, resulted in big achievements.

Rajnath Singh in an exclusive interview with IANS said, “In 2014, the country’s defence exports stood at around ? 600-800 crore, today it has gone beyond ? 31,000 crore. And, in the next five years, we hope to take it beyond ? 50,000 crore.”

He further said that the Defence sector forms an important constituent of the Viksit Bharat 2047 mission and making India, one of the biggest defence suppliers in the world ranks is high on the government’s priority.

He also blamed the previous dispensations for ‘laggardness’ in the defence sector and said that prior to 2014, the country remained dependent only on foreign countries for its pool of arsenals and never made an effort to develop indigenous weapons.

“It was on the back of firm resolve of Modi government that India is fast achieving self-reliance in the defence sector and also emerging as a global superpower,” he pointed out.

The Defence Minister, further laying out the Modi government’s vision, said that India should position itself as a leading defence exporter in next few years and should also look forward to occupy the ‘numero uno’ spot.

He also underscored the need for India’s emergence as ‘Vishwashakti’ in a world marred by military face-offs and armed conflicts.

“India should be a Vishwashakti, not just for global hegemony, not for annexing any country’s territory but for protecting the interest of all,” Rajnath Singh told IANS.

The Defence Minister further asserted that India’s enemies will be punished, not just within its borders but also on the other side of the frontiers.

“If Pakistan can’t dismantle terror factories on its soil, it should take our help. Our forces will raze it for once and all,” he said, sending out a strong message.