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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

HAL seeks clarity on futuristic projects; hopes Rolls Royce, Sukhoi issues get resolved

R K Tyagi
By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) Chairman R K Tyagi has said that the country should come out clearly on futuristic projects like Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft, Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft and Multirole Transport Aircraft to prioritise strategic and geopolitical goals.
In an interview to Express, Tyagi said the company is contemplating a two-pronged approach — strategic and operational.
“A clear policy on indigenous manufacture of helicopters is also the need of the hour. We already have a certified product in helicopters — ALH Dhruv — that has been servicing multiple customers. With the Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) and the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) development programmes in the pipeline, we believe that all helicopter requirements for Indian defence forces shall be met internally,” said Tyagi.
At the operational level, Tyagi hoped that the new government takes a clear stand and issues a policy directive on resolving the Rolls Royce crisis and Su-30 MKI (cost escalation) issues.
“The new government would have to be pragmatic in its approach as delay in solving the Rolls Royce issue would impact serviceability of our six frontline fleets. As far as the Sukhoi cost escalation is concerned, the supplies are on hold from the Russian side. The issue is awaiting the Cabinet Committee on Security clearance since September,” said Tyagi, who recently completed two years in office.
On major initiatives launched in HAL during his tenure, Tyagi listed the IT framework audit (carried out across the company by KPMG) and the five-year road map Project Parivartan as the lead ones.
“We did competency mapping and sector skill council in the aerospace and aviation sector. Several HR initiatives for talent acquisition, employee engagement, leadership development, introduction and amendment of various policies and procedures were also started during this period,” he added.
On the reasons behind HAL’s aggressive stand in pushing its pet HTT-40 project, despite Indian Air Force (IAF) showing little interest, Tyagi refused to be drawn into any controversy.
“IAF and HAL share a common belief that our country must own technologies that we need. Efficiency of home grown products have been proven beyond doubt by our Dhruv during the flash flood in Uttarkhand. We do not believe in confrontations with our customer,” said Tyagi.
Productivity up: Referring to HAL’s increased productivity, Tyagi said that in 2010, the company’s turnover was `11,457 crore with manpower of 35,000. “Today our turnover is `15,180 crore and our manpower is just over 31,000. The productivity has improved primarily through aggressive use of IT and outsourcing in select non-core areas. I believe in leading a motivated workforce,” said Tyagi.
Copyright@The New Indian Express

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