The BrahMos unit in Lucknow will be the “centrepiece” of the Defense Corridor Project in Uttar Pradesh and work will begin on the mega unit in October, Awanish K Awasthi, the Additional Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh, has told News18.
India will manufacture its next-generation BrahMos (BrahMos-NG) at this unit and Rs 3,000 crore has been committed as investment for the project by BrahMos Aerospace, the joint venture of Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) of India and NPO Mashinostroeyenia of Russia. Rs 1,500 crore of investment will come in phase one and more than 100 BrahMos missiles will be manufactured here in the next three years.
Awasthi said UP has been assured that all clearances will come from the DRDO for the project by September and construction of the unit will begin by October. “We have allotted 80 hectares of land at a nominal cost and the joint venture has taken possession of the land; 50 percent of the boundary work is also complete. They have now planned bigger than what they had originally planned,” Awasthi said.
The Additional Chief Secretary said the BrahMos Unit will be the “centre of the production which will make the main difference” in the upcoming Defense Corridor in UP. Defense Minister Rajnath Singh laid the foundation stone of BrahMos Missile set-up in Lucknow on December 26 last year. Another key project in the Defense Corridor is establishing a state of the art common Defense Testing Infrastructure under the scheme promoted by the Ministry of Defence, Awasthi said.
Defense Corridor Shaping Up, No Progress in Agra
The Defense Industrial Corridor in Uttar Pradesh is planned to be established in six nodes across the state in as many districts and till date, a total of 93 industrial and institutional MoUs have been signed with various private investors and organizations with an estimated investment value of over 11,256 crore, the UP government says. The maximum number of MoUs (35) have been signed for the Aligarh node, followed by 15 in Lucknow node, 12 in Kanpur node and nine in Jhansi.
Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) is setting anchor unit with investments worth Rs 400 crore in phase 1 in Jhansi on 183 hectares of land for the manufacturing of propulsion systems.
Nearly 1,600 hectares of land parcels have been procured by the UP government for the Defense Corridor but no land has been identified or procured in the Agra node. “Lucknow node is seeing fast activity and Aligarh node is sold out. Kanpur node we are expecting big investments and Jhansi we have for BDL and others are also coming,” Awasthi told News18.
The Agra node, however, has seen no progress due to the Taj Trapezium Zone (TTZ) restrictions that put a complete ban on all industrial activities in a large area of the Agra region.