Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh has approved enhancement of funding under Technology Development Fund (TDF) scheme of Ministry of Defence to Rs 50 crore per project from Rs 10 crore. The TDF scheme, executed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), supports indigenous development of components, products, systems and technologies by MSMEs and start-ups.
It may be recalled that 25 per cent of defence R&D budget was earmarked for private industry, start-ups and academia in Union Budget 2022-23. The enhanced funding is in line with the budget announcement and it will give further boost the vision of ‘Aatmanirbharta in defence’.
The TDF Scheme aims to provide a major fillip to the defence manufacturing sector by encouraging the industry to innovate and develop defence technologies in order to place India on the self-reliance trajectory. The scheme facilitates up to 90 per cent of the total project cost and allows industry to work in consortium with another industry/academia. With the enhanced funding, the industry and startups will be able to develop more complex technologies for existing and future weapon systems and platforms. Till date, 56 projects have been sanctioned under TDF scheme.