New Delhi: It took years and series of scams to make the government realise that the ultimate solution to the scourge of corruption is indigenization. This is something which was evident in the statement made by Defence Minister AK Antony in the Lok Sabha on Monday.

Antony said the government would give "more priority to indigenization so that Indian public sector and private sector can play a major role in producing state-of-the-art equipment for the Indian forces."

VVIP chopper scam is not the first scam in the history of defence deals. But finally the government seems to have woken from slumber and has decided to change its defence procurement policy. But how soon and how effectively it will work is something which we have to wait and watch.

List Of Major Defence Scams Which Took Place In Independent India
Jeep scam, 1948
VK Krishna Menon, the then Indian high commissioner to Britain, bypassed protocol to sign a deal worth Rs 80 lakh with a foreign firm for the purchase of army jeeps
Bofors scam, late 80s
On March 24, 1986, a USD 285 million (about  1,500 crore) contract between the Government of India and Swedish arms company Bofors was signed for supply of 410 (155mm) Howitzer field guns. About a year later, on April 16, 1987, it was alleged that Bofors paid kickbacks to top Indian politicians and key defence officials to seal the deal.

Kargil coffin Scam, 1999
After the 1999 Kargil war a major scam had occurred in the purchase of coffins. The then ruling government National Democratic Alliance had purchased 500 caskets worth 2500 dollars each which was presumed to be thirteen times the original amount.

Tehelka expose, 2001
Noted journalist Tarun Tejpal’s team carried out an expose acting as undercover arms dealers offering bribes to the then BJP president Bangaru Laxman, Samta Party president Jaya Jaitley and other top army officers. All these dignitaries were caught on camera while receiving bribes. This expose had caused a lot of embarrassment for the then Vajpayee government.
Barak Scam, 2000
Contracts was signed by the Indian government to procure seven Barak systems at a total cost of USD 199.50 million and 200 missiles at a cost of USD 69.13 million. The deal was signed despite objections being raised by several sections. The CBI is still investigating the scam which includes name of the then defence minister George Fernandes.
Tatra Truck Scam, 2012
Former Army Chief General VK Singh had claimed that the Tatra trucks sold to the army were not only grossly overpriced but also sub-standard in terms of quality and operation. He also alleged that Rs 14 crore was offered to him to clear the purchase of Tatra trucks.

(Raghwendra Shukla/JPN)

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