Modi to lay foundation of HAL’s copter facility Sunday

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Bengaluru, Jan 2 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited’s (HAL) new helicopter facility on Sunday at Karnataka’s Bidarehallikaval village.

Located 110 km from here, the new facility will manufacture up to 10 classes of helicopters including Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) and Naval Multi-role Helicopters (NMRH).

“HAL’s new copter facility is a shot in the arm for Make in India programme, it will immensely benefit the local economy and create hundreds of direct and indirect jobs,” said HAL Chairman and Managing Director T. Suvarna Raju.

With an investment of approximately Rs.4,000 crore in 610 acres of land, the helicopter facility has a potential to generate employment for 3,000 people.

Karnataka has an enviable aerospace ecosystem few states can boast about.

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The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has 10 labs in Bengaluru while Airbus, Honeywell, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Wipro Aerospcae, HAL – Rolls Royce joint venture and others are located in the state.

“Karnataka has more than half of all the production units and Research and Development centres and almost all global aerospace majors have presence in the state. A quarter of all the aircraft and spacecraft made in India are produced in Karnataka,” state additional chief secretary K. Ratna Prabha said.

To further propel the industry, Karnataka government also rolled out an industry specific Aerospace Policy in addition to developing a 1,000 aerospace park (Special Economic Zone) in Devanahalli.

Devanahalli SEZ has 72 projects in the pipeline with an investment potential of Rs.14,000 crore.

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“With the establishment of this helicopter manufacturing (Facility) coupled with the opportunities in ‘Buy and Make’ option from offset obligation and availability of the ecosystem for manufacturing, Karnataka is expected to see new highs in the coming years,” added Prabha.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, and state industries minister R.V. Deshpande will attend the foundation laying ceremony on Sunday.

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