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Maharashtra govt plans exclusive zones for defence industries

09 March 2017

The Maharashtra government is planning to set up industrial facilities exclusively for defence equipment production in the state. The state government had last week said that it would set up a fund of Rs1,000 crore for helping manufacturers in the defence sector.

The decision follows demands by companies interested in entering defence production, which would require land for testing explosives and other defence related equipment, in places like hilly terrain and sites away from human habitat.

The government has identified land for setting up two such facilities, one at Jejuri near Pune and another in Ahmednagar district, a source in the state industries department said.

Some leading Maharashtra-based private companies, including Anil Ambani's Reliance Defence, have shown interest in venturing into defence equipment production.

The state government expects an investment of around $5 billion in this area in the state.

The state government has also drafted a defence and aerospace policy, which is in line with the policies of the centre and neighbouring states like Telengana. The state government is keen for its policy to be aligned with that of the centre, he said.

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