India-Russia joint venture BrahMos Aerospace wishes to set up a modern production facility in the Lucknow node of UP’s Defence Corridor for its next-generation missile project, the state government said. CEO and MD of BrahMos Aerospace Sudhir Kumar Mishra met Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on 24 August for the allotment of a 200 acre land in Lucknow.
The company produces one of the best supersonic cruise missile systems BrahMos. Cruise missiles under a certain range — the next-generation BrahMos will have a range of 600 km — are not covered by the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), because of which India’s DRDO and Russias’ NPO Mashinostroeyenia could collaborate on the project. Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles cannot be exported from one country to another or produced by two countries jointly under the MTCR. This is why BrahMos could be exported to Vietnam.
BrahMos Aerospace, formed on 12 February 1998 as a joint venture between DRDO and joint-stock company ‘Military Industrial Consortium’ of Russia, has a production facility in Hyderabad, Nagpur and Pilani.
It is to be seen whether the comity of nations objects to the new BrahMos that can hit targets up to 600 km away. While the MTCR prohibits collaborative or exported missiles of ranges greater than 290 km, India already breached it with the 400 km-range version in September 2020.
The facility is a part of the aerospace firm’s expansion for the BrahMos Next Generation (BrahMos-NG) Missile project. The facility, if approved, will make Uttar Pradesh an aerospace and defence hub of India as it will bring in high-end technologies to the country. It will put Lucknow prominently on the world map as a manufacturing hub for top-notch technologies, the state government statement said.
The plant is likely to come up with an approximate investment of Rs 300 crore. It will provide direct employment to 500 engineers and technical staff. Besides, around 10,000 people will get indirect employment. In three years, the plant will have the capacity to manufacture 100 BrahMos missiles.
State government sources said that Yogi Adityanath had given his consent to the project and directed officials to allocate land to BrahMos Aerospace.
The company is likely to start production within three months of getting possession of the land.
Mishra sent a letter to Additional Chief Secretary (Home) and CEO of UPEIDA Awanish Awasthi for the requested allotment of land in Lucknow.
Government officials say the proposal mentions the order of 400 BrahMos missiles (worth Rs 8000 crore) by the Indian Air Force. The company wants to execute this order at its proposed manufacturing unit in Lucknow.
The Lucknow plant will cater to export orders in the future.
Over 200 small, medium and large Indian public and private sector defence enterprises, institutions and laboratories are associated with the prestigious BrahMos missile programme, said the state government.
The Defence Corridor has six nodes: Aligarh, Agra, Jhansi, Chitrakoot, Kanpur and Lucknow.
On 21 February 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the Rs 20,000 crore Defence Industrial Corridor in the Bundelkhand region, one of the most economically backward regions of Uttar Pradesh.