Around 10,220 acres of defense land is under encroachment across the country, including by various agencies of the central and state governments, the Rajya Sabha was informed today. Replying to a question, Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre said various measures are being taken to remove encroachments from defence land. Defence land to the extent of approximately 10,220 acres is presently under encroachment by various agencies of the central and state governments as well as by public sector undertakings, slum dwellers, and private persons, he said. To a question on the private defense industry, Bhamre said since the opening of the defense sector in 2001, the government has issued 342 industrial licenses to 205 Indian companies.
“Adequate safety and security procedures would need to be put in place by the licensee. The companies shall comply with the security guidelines applicable to them based on the security categorization indicated in the license,” he said. The minister said defence items produced by such companies will primarily be sold to the ministry of defense. “However, they can also be sold to other government entities under the control of the ministry of home affairs, public sector undertakings, state governments and other different licensee companies, without the approval of the department of defence production,” he said.