India is working on plan to develop its own fighter aircraft using a mix of indigenous and foreign technology, as the country seeks to curb dependency on imports, defence minister Manohar Parikkar said, adding that India could be flying its own fighter jets in the next four to five years.
"In four or five years we could develop our own fighter planes with the help of a mixture of indigenous and foreign technologies," he said.
Parrikar was in the city to launch a three-day annual technical festival of IIT Roorkee, which started on Friday.
Addressing a gathering of academia at IIT Roorkie, the minister appealed to the "bright minds" of IITs and other institutions to integrate themselves and give their services to the defence sector.
"Bright minds from IITs and other areas should integrate themselves with the country's defence sector and render their services to DRDO-like establishments to make the 'Make in India' campaign successful through your 'out of the box' thinking, creative ability, innovation and engineering knowledge," Parrikar said.
The minister said that people from industry, academia and technology-developing fields could be integrated with DRDO like establishments.
"My first priority in this direction is to make a hassle-free and non-bureaucratic system for getting the entry in DRDO by these people," he said. "We have earmarked over 120 items of defence requirements which we can be developed with the help of indigenous technology," the minister added.
Parrikar said under the 'Make in India' initiative, the focus of the government is to reduce the burden of import to a "noticeable extent" through the use of indigenous technology.
The institute's chairman of board of governors Ashok Misra, director Pradipta Banerji, former chairman of Atomic Energy Commission PV Athawale, former Air Marshal T Suvarna Raju and defence journalist Ajai Shukla were present on the occasion.