A press statement issued by the defence ministry said, “In his speech, he (Reddy) called upon DRDO scientists to focus on next-generation needs, including cybersecurity, space and artificial intelligence.”
According to the statement, Reddy mentioned that “a number of SMEs and MSMEs (micro, small and medium enterprises)” are being nurtured by the DRDO as these are supplying small components to subsystems for its projects. He added that at least 30 startups should be supported every year to develop innovative products for the Indian armed forces.
Reddy declared “export” as the theme of DRDO for 2021 and mentioned that many products based on the DRDO’s technologies have already been exported by the defence public sector units (DPSUs) and private companies. He also highlighted the role of the DRDO during the COVID-19 pandemic, stating that its 40 laboratories developed over 100 products on a war footing to combat the virus.