Defence industries in India will likely gain momentum under the rule of Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, only the second woman to hold the title in the country after Indira Gandhi, and the first to hold it full-time.
Indian companies like Larsen and Toubro, Tata Power, Tata Motors, Cochin Shipyard, Bharat Electronics, Reliance Defence, Ashok Leyland and Bharat Forge have been waiting for years for India's sizeable defence capital expenditure, Economic Times reported.
But despite having many home-based defence companies, India is still one of the largest importers of defence products.
Global arms sales over the last five years reached their highest level since 1990, with India being the world's largest defence importer, according to an International Peace Research Institute report. India accounted for 13 percent of global arms imports between 2012 and 2016.
India's defence technological advancement has been clearly very slow, and if there is any war, India may not be prepared for it.
However, the government is now pushing for faster and better improvement in the defence sector, propelled by surging geopolitical threats -- mainly from China and Pakistan.
Many significant defence projects, such as making submarines, frigates, battlefield management systems, artillery guns and tactical communication systems, are still on hold and need to be executed sooner than later.
Make in India under Nirmala Sitharaman
With Nirmala Sitharaman now appointed defence minister, expectations of local defence manufacturing companies are high that activities will likely gather steam in the defence sector and boost the Make in India initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Make in India programme was launched in 2015 to encourage national and multinational companies to manufacture their products in India.
If the overall activities are fast-tracked, analysts say India's defence outlay could reach $250 billion over the next 10 years.
That means the 30 percent local sources rule that applies on defence orders alone would offer a minimum opportunity of $75 billion for domestic players.
However, defence companies in India have not shown any growth and neither received any order so far despite the government's Make in India initiative. Now, with a full-time minister appointed, the sector is expected to grow.
"With the support of the Prime Minister, so many things have happened in the ministry like Start-up India, Make in India, etc. There is some misconception about Make in India, but it will be answered," said Nirmala Sitharaman after her appointment.