“Maharashtra's first MSME Defence Expo 2024 concludes; marks over 2L visitors”

The first MSME Defence Expo 2024, marking Maharashtra's debut in hosting a defence expo, wrapped up after three power-packed days, unveiling India's capabilities in indigenous defence production and forward-looking defence technologies.

A pivotal aspect of the expo was the Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) inked, notably between the Government of Maharashtra and Max Aerospace and Aviation Pvt Ltd, SBL Energy Ltd, and a collaboration between Nibe Ltd and Munitions India Limited. The event also featured insightful panel discussions, shedding light on the defence ecosystem's current landscape and the challenges and opportunities encountered on India's path to self-sufficiency in defence manufacturing.

The expo, which witnessed over 2,00,000 visitors, showcased defence equipment from leading entities such as DRDO, L&T, Solar Industries, Bharat Forge, Nibe Ltd., and Tata Advanced Systems, among others. Key players in the defence industry displayed an extensive range of products at the event, spanning from small arms weapon systems to diverse military vehicles and advanced air-defence and missile systems. Notable exhibits showcased the Advanced Light Helicopter Dhruv, the Light Combat Helicopter Prachand, the powerful Dhanush artillery gun, the precision Field Howitzer 77 Bofors gun, T-90 Bhishma, and Arjun Tanks, alongside the Infantry Carrying Vehicle BMP-II. Additionally, attendees had the opportunity to view the Indian Air Force's (IAF) Make in India-manufactured Samar II and the Akash surface-to-air weapon system.

Furthermore, the event was graced by discussions led by Vivek Ram Chaudhari, PVSM AVSM VM ADC, Air Chief Marshal; Admiral R. Hari Kumar, PVSM AVSM VSM ADC, Chief of Naval Staff; and Gen. Manoj Pande, PVSM AVSM VSM ADC, Chief of Army Staff. They engaged with students about challenges and opportunities in the defence sector, addressing inquiries with passion and insight. Also, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) of the Indian Armed Forces, Gen. Anil Chauhan PVSM UYSM AVSM SM VSM, joined virtually.

Admiral R. Hari Kumar said, "As we march into Amrit Kaal, where India aims to be a fully developed country by 2047, the Indian Navy is confident that ships, submarines, aircraft, and any equipment that matters for the defence will be made in India in alignment with our ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat' mission. Since INS Vikrant is already engaged with 500 MSME's, we understand the need to tackle funding challenges faced by smaller players and are working with SIDBI to address those. As we grow to become the third largest economy where more trade will be conducted through the sea, the Indian Navy is committed to creating a safe, stable, and secure region."


Dr. Samir V. Kamat, Chairman, DRDO, said, "Our Prime Minister's vision for India's future hinges on our advancements, particularly in defense." To lead globally by 2047, we must foster an ecosystem that unites academia, MSMEs, and the startup industry. With recent developments and disruptive technologies, we aim not only to enhance our services but also to become the world's best in the defence field. Together, we can surpass expectations and achieve our goals well before 2047."