Defence minister launched schemes for defence start-ups

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Defence minister launched schemes for defence start-ups

  • The Defence Minister of India has launched Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) Prime and the sixth Defence India Start-up Challenge (DISC–6) meant to encourage defence start–ups during DefConnect 2.0.


  • Aim: to support projects, requiring support beyond ₹1.5 crore up to ₹10 crore, to help the ever-growing start-ups in the sector
  • Objective: to provide an opportunity to science and tech professionals to understand futuristic technologies such as AI, Augmented Reality, block-chain and space technologies.
  • To provide direct & indirect employment to thousands of skilled and semi–skilled people.


  • It is related to Artificial Intelligence (AI), advanced imaging, sensor systems.

Need for the Schemes

  • Global Instability: due to:
    • COVID-19 pandemic,
    • Recent Ukrainian conflict,
    • Instability in the Middle East [West Asia] and in Afghanistan and Pakistan
  • Ensuring peace and stability in the country: To equip the country in every area to ensure peace and stability, the development of disruptive technology is a key.

Other Government initiatives to promote Defence startups

  • DARE to DREAM contest: launched by DRDO
    • It is a Pan India Innovation Contest to support startups & innovators to contribute to the Defence ecosystem.
    • DRDO specifies various themes and invites innovative ideas under those themes.
    • Best ideas are selected and awarded.
    • DRDO also supports awarded ideas to realise them into Prototype through TDF scheme
  • Technology Development Fund (TDF) Scheme: It is executed by DRDO under ‘Make in India’ initiative.
    • The Government has approved TDF Scheme to encourage industries especially MSMEs and Startups to develop various defence technologies.
    • The scheme operates in Grants-in-Aid Mode.
  • Procedure for ‘Make-II’ category, which is Industry funded, was introduced in DPP-2016 to encourage indigenous development and manufacture of defence equipment.
  • It has a number of industry friendly provisions such as relaxation of eligibility criterion, minimal documentation, provision for considering proposals suggested by industry/individual etc.

Exam Track

Prelims Takeaway

  • TDF
  • Make in India
  • DISC–6
  • iDEX-Prime