NEW DELHI: Defence minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday released the Project Management Approach (PMA) guidelines for iDEX (Innovations for Defence Excellence) during the launch function of Defence India Start-Up Challenge-4 (DISC4).

Apart from Singh, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat also participated in the event, being held via video conferencing.

"DISC-4 challenge will surge ahead of its earlier editions and promote innovation and development in the country. Similarly iDEX4Fauji initiative will ensure the participation of our personnel in this program," Singh said.

The defence minister congratulated all stakeholders, including those in the Ministry of Defence (MoD), for creating such an environment where participants from various sectors are coming together to promote innovation in defence.

"In the process of making defence sector strong and self-reliant we have understood that along with the government sector the private sector too needs to participate in this. We have take some policy decisions too in this regard. Partnerships with private sector, technology transfer, 74 percent FDI approval and the recently released negative list of 101 items are a part of it. We want to promote our private players along with opting for built in the country products," he said.

The defence minister mentioned the 'Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020' launched yesterday, which contains provisions to promote the private sector's participation.

"We neither have a dearth of talent nor of demand for it. In the absence of a common platform, they were not able to meet up at a common place. iDEX platform has succeeded in filling this gap. In the last three rounds of DISC, over 700 start-ups and innovators had participated. Out of these 58 participants, were chosen for innovation grants under 'Support for Prototype and research kickstart' (SPARK)," Singh said.

He further added that the 11 challenges in the DISC-4 challenge cover all needs of the armed forces.