One more step towards privatisation of defence sector production and maintenance
The Army Base Workshop (ABW) in Delhi is set to be privatised in the coming days. It is reported that a plan has been drawn up to invite private companies to operate the workshop. ABWs carry out the repair and maintenance of all army vehicles and equipment.
The 505 Army Base Workshop (ABW) in Delhi is set to be privatised in the coming days. It has been reported that a Detailed Project Report is currently being prepared to invite private companies to operate the Delhi ABW. ABWs carry out the repair and maintenance of all army vehicles and equipment. Private companies will now be allowed to undertake these crucial operations although the ABWs will remain under the nominal ownership of the government. Moreover, private players will be free to use the equipment and many acres of land of the ABWs for other projects such as the maintenance of non-army equipment.
The government has already announced the corporatisation of 41 ordnance factories and dismantling of the Ordnance Factory Board. However, the news of the outright privatisation of the Delhi ABW makes it clear that corporatisation is only one step towards the complete privatisation of the defence sector.
There are eight ABWs in the country (in cities like Delhi, Agra, Pune and Bengaluru) that own land and other assets worth thousands of crores of rupees. Although these assets are public wealth, private companies will be able to use them for their own profit. This move towards privatisation will put at stake not only the jobs of thousands of workers but also the safety of the army and the people of the country.