The state-run Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) have indicated that it is in the process of developing robotic soldiers and mules for the Armed Forces. The robots will act as human soldiers and they will require a data base and artificial intelligence to carry out activities. On the other hand, DRDO has also announced that it is scouting for more production centres for creating missiles.
During the inauguration of DRDO Centre for Life Science, Dr. V K Saraswat, Director General of DRDO stated that the process of developing robotic soldiers is taking final shape. These robotic soldiers will be capable of sensing and clearing mines and enable the operations of the Armed forces. The robot could replace soldiers in sensitive locations in insurgency-hit areas and minimize human losses. DRDO was also building a robot mule to carry heavy luggage upto 400 KG to high altitudes.
DRDO had already developed ‘Daksh’ which is a remote-controlled robotic vehicle for detecting and destroying dangerous objects like bombs. ‘Daksh’ has been approved by the Indian army for induction. According to DRDO, the robotic soldiers and mules will be a part of unmanned fighting systems for the future.
Earlier this year, DRDO had stated that the ‘Daksh’ robotic vehicle is being developed to handle explosives and IEDs. The robotic vehicle will soon have weapons, more power as well as night vision. The Research and Development Establishment (R&DE) is developing a weaponised version of the 'bomb hunter ' Daksh’ robot specifically for fighting militants alongside soldiers.
Meanwhile, DRDO has also indicated that it is also gearing towards complete self-reliance in producing missiles. DRDO Chief Saraswat added that DRDO was looking for one more production centre for the missiles. Currently, the missiles were being produced at Hyderabad and Thiruvanthapuram. The ‘Akash’ missile is in the production stage and a few companies like state-run Bharat Electronics Ltd are manufacturing it. He added that 80 per cent self-sufficiency in missiles and roughly 400 industries were involved by contributing components for the missiles.
DRDO Chief Dr. Saraswat also indicated that there has also been huge demand for BrahMos missile from foreign nations like Indonesia and Malaysia. However, there was no proposal to export now since India will first cater to its own Armed Forces.