OFB products are high cost, poor quality:: Defence Ministry

Favouring transformation of Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) into a public sector corporate entity, Defence Ministry said on Wednesday that its products are of high cost, have poor quality issues and there is lack of or minimal innovation in the factories.

Amidst protests by OFB employees, the ministry also said that the proposed transformation will improve efficiency, reduce import dependence and enhance combat efficiency of the armed forces.

Defence Production Secretary Ajay Kumar had on Saturday said the senior officials of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) are holding talks with the employee unions of the OFB over its transformation into a corporate entity. However a day earlier on Friday, the MoD had clarified that there is no proposal to privatise the OFB.

The OFB consists of forty-one ordnance factories, nine training institutes, three regional marketing centres and four regional controllerates of safety spread all across the country.

Apart from being the world’s largest government-operated production organisation, it is also the oldest organisation run by the Government of India with a workforce of around 1.6 lakh.