Millennium Post

Defence panel to submit report on restructuring of acquisition

A key committee set up by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to suggest ways to restructure the acquisition wing will submit its report this week which will pitch in for a separate set up for defence procurement.

The panel was set up in May last year by Parrikar following recommendations of the Dhirendra Singh Committee, which had given inputs for the new Defence Procurement Policy.

It was headed by Vivek Rae, who had served as the director general (acquisition) in the Defence Ministry.

However, he quit as the chief in November last year following disagreement on key issues with other members of the panel which included former Financial Advisor to the Defence Ministry Amit Cowshish, Air Marshal (retd) N V Tyagi, Lt Gen (retd) A V Subramanian, IIM professor Pritam Singh and Defence Ministry officials J R K Rao and Sanjay Garg.

Parrikar had in February last year said government is "actively considering" a separate set up for defence acquisition.

Ministry sources said the panel's report is final and will be submitted this week.

The Dhirendra Singh Committee has proposed "Dedicated Procurement Organisation Outside The Government Of India Ministry Structure" in a report submitted in 2015.

It had said the procurement executive, as now established, is a result of the recommendations of the group of ministers post Kargil war and is one of the institutions created as part of the reorganisation of the higher defence management structures.

"It has now functioned for more than a decade. Like any organisation it has its strength and weaknesses. It is our recommendation that the time is ripe for it to undergo a second set of reforms.

"Its main drawback is that it essentially performs line functions whilst being embedded in a larger structure, which is designed to perform staff functions," the report had said.
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