UP to push Defence CorridorUP to push Defence Corridor

Virendra Singh Rawat

The Uttar Pradesh government is pushing for the Chitrakoot node of the mega Defence Corridor to bolster the socioeconomic development in the arid Bundelkhand region.

While UP Defence Industrial Corridor (UPDIC) spans six nodes viz. Lucknow, Kanpur, Jhansi, Aligarh, Chitrakoot and Agra districts, Jhansi and Chitrakoot fall under Bundelkhand, which has abundant and fallow swathes of land.

UPDIC is critical to promote ‘Make in UP’ and contribute to India’s defence self-reliance and export goals.

Recently, the union environment ministry green signalled the proposal of developing 60 hectares of land in Chitrakoot under the Corridor.

According to nodal agency UP Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA), the environment ministry nod had the potential to attract projects worth Rs 5,000 crore and creating 100,000 job opportunities in Chitrakoot alone.

Chitrakoot node is likely to witness manufacturing projects of drones and helicopters apart from arms and ammunition of varying calibers.

So far, the Yogi Adityanath government has cleared defence projects worth Rs 25,000 crore, and signed 140 memorandums of understanding (MoU) with public and private companies.

The MoUs were inked with Adani Defence and Aerospace, BrahMos Aerospace, Ancor Research Labs, Tata Technologies, Bharat Dynamics Limited, Delta Combat Systems, SpiceJet Technic, Verivision, HAL, Gliders India, Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), Aerolloy Technologies etc.

While 5,000 hectares will be acquired by UPEIDA across the six nodes of UPDIC, nearly 1,700 hectares have already been acquired and allotted to investors.

About 1,000 hectares was given to investors in Jhansi, which is being developed as a hub for the production and testing of arms and ammunition. Bharat Dynamics is the lead investor in Jhansi.

Under the UPDIC, the prestigious BrahMos missile project is coming up over 80 hectares in Lucknow. Moreover, Aerolloy, which makes aerospace parts and earlier supplied components to India’s Chandrayaan Mission, is also setting up a plant.

BrahMos is a joint venture between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) Russia’s NPOM to develop next generation supersonic missiles for the Indian forces.

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