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The Minister of Defence (or the Defence Minister) is the head of the Ministry of Defence of the Government of India. He is often assisted by a Minister of State for Defence and less-commonly, the lower-ranked Deputy Minister of Defence.
The first Defence Minister of independent India was Baldev Singh, who served in Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's cabinet during 1947–52. Manohar Parrikar of the Bharatiya Janata Party is the incumbent Defence Minister.