“The propaganda was to target the government and make allegations using HAL’s name. Such falsehood, no matter how big, frequent or high, is always defeated in the face of truth. This factory and the rising strength of HAL have exposed the purveyors of falsehood. Reality is speaking for itself,” said Modi after inaugurating HAL’s new helicopter factory in Tumakuru district’s Gubbi, around 92km from here.
Although the PM refrained from taking names, the reference was clearly to the campaign by Rahul Gandhi and Congress accusing the Modi government of “snatching” the Rafale offset contract from HAL and gifting it to Anil Ambani’s company.
“…Today, the same HAL is making modern Tejas for Indian armed forces and is a centre of global attraction, bolstering India’s self-reliance in the defence sector,” the PM said.
Modi’s attack on the opposition came when Congress and others in the opposition have launched yet another tirade against him; this time for allegedly favouring the Adani Group.
Modi emphasized that success is assured when one works with the spirit of ‘Nation First’. He said reforms in the working of public sector enterprises as well as opening up opportunities for the private sector are all showing results and HAL’s achievements are reflective of the same.
Praising the talent and innovation of Karnataka’s youth, he said the manufacturing sector’s strength is manifested in products such as drones and Tejas fighter planes. From the HAL facility, Modi also remotely laid the foundation stone of the Tumakuru Industrial Township and two Jal Jeevan Mission projects at Tiptur and Chikkanayakanahalli in the district. After a walk-through of the helicopter factory and structure hangar, he unveiled the Light Utility Helicopter (LUH). The factory will also produce Indian Multi Role Helicopters (IMRH) and undertake maintenance, repair & overhaul (MRO) of helicopters in future.
“Our double-engine government has made Karnataka the first choice of investors and this is illustrated by the HAL project dedicated to the nation today, the foundation stone for which was laid in 2016, with a pledge to reduce foreign dependence for defence needs,” the PM said.
PM Modi attacks Rahul Gandhi over the Rafale row, says ‘truth prevails over lies’
Modi said he was delighted that hundreds of arms and equipment are being manufactured in India, which are being used by the armed forces. “From advanced assault rifles to tanks, aircraft carriers, helicopters, fighter jets and transport aircraft, India is manufacturing them all,” he said. “Today, many projects worth hundreds of crores related to employment opportunities for the youth, ease of life of the rural community and women, strengthening of the armed forces and the concept of Made in India are being dedicated (to the nation) or foundation stones are being laid,” he said.
The PM stressed the fact that investment in aerospace in the last eight to nine years was five times more than what was done in the 15 years before 2014. He underlined that ‘Made in India’ arms are not just supplied to Indian armed forces but also contribute to defence exports, which have grown manifold when compared to the years before 2014.
“Hundreds of helicopters are going to be manufactured in this facility in the near future which will give rise to businesses worth Rs 4 lakh crore. When such manufacturing units are set up, it not only strengthens the armed forces but also creates employment and self-employment opportunities,” he said.
The PM also said that this year’s middle class-friendly Union Budget will give strength to everyone’s efforts to advance India (Viksit Bharat) and is a big step towards building a capable, well-to-do, self-contained and strong India. “This is a popular, all-encompassing, all-inclusive budget that touches everyone,” he said.
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