I thought we had it bad. "Hollowness" in 1.3 Million strong Indian Army

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by MissingOTC, Mar 28, 2012.

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  1. cpunk

    cpunk LE Moderator

    We're going to start this thread again but this time without:

    The racist undertones

    The weird colonial assumptions about Indian military capabilities

    Threats of violence
    • Like Like x 6
  2. Quite a lot of Singh's letter is designed to attract some attention to the Army in order to redress what the Army sees as an imbalance between investment in the Navy and Air Force and investment in the ground forces. In actual fact, the Indian Army is in pretty good shape - although Gen Singh's point about war stocks of ammunition is not invalid. I wonder if he mightn't have overreached himself a touch, here - the government hasn't been showing him, personally, too much love recently and this might be a good excuse to move him on.
  3. Pretty good shape? I think a lot of the modernisation process has been selective. The vast majority of their tank fleet is ancient, and (as Singh points out) no modernisation with regards to SPH and IFVs. Surely a worry if your major theatre of war will be armoured battles in the deserts right?
  4. Huh?

    That means all the cool pictures and that nice video I posted are gone?

    Not every post in there was bad, definitely not my conversation with anyone.

    You could have simply deleted the unpleasant posts, why the entire thread?
  5. Armoured battles with whom? Pakistan? I rather think India is more than capable of containing Pakistan with its current equipment.
    Deterring Chinese expansion into Myanmar, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal is another matter and justifies India's current drive to modernise her missile defence, air-force and navy.
    Although the Indian Army really needs to upgrade and standardise its tanks and artillery (not to mention become independent of foreign armaments industries) it's not as urgent a problem, as I think before (the much more modern) Chinese tank divisions start rolling down the Burma Road and over the Imphal Plain in a bid to 'rescue Bangladesh and lift the Indian blockade of Chittagong' the whole scene would have gone nuclear.
  6. P. I think it had to be done, the Mods acted judiciously, you can always post the video and pictures again.
    This is an interesting topic - you have a lot to offer it though I feel we should refrain from referring to the previous thread.
  7. Ok, I understand.

    Anyway, I am also interested in posting some selected pictures form Defexpo 2012. If there is enough interest in ARRSE for that, I would request someone to open a thread. I am not opening myself because I don't know how many people will be interested.
  8. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    India’s modernisation has always been slow because national priorities have been aimed elsewhere and because ever since the Bofors deal, all concerned are very chary about being labeled corrupt and hounded thereafter, be they politician, military personnel or civil servants. It is an unfortunate situation and yet a reality.

    One of the infirmity is that there is no national strategic vision from which the concepts, organisational structure, weaponry et al can be based. Though the CDS concept has been accepted, it has not been implemented and the recommendation that the Military and Defence Ministry be integrated has not been done. The reason is historic. Given the perception that post Independence politicians had, they were averse to the military, given their pre Independence experience that it is but an instrument of repression, though publicly they never admitted it so. That is the reason why in the Order of Precedence, the C in C’s position got slowly demoted from No 2 pre Independence to the current 12.
    Papers from the Indian Defence Review

    CDS would give the military a coordinated approach and playing one against the other would become difficult (as it is being done).

    Indian Army was not modernised till 1962 because of this aversion and for which India had to face the drubbing that it did in 1962. It is post 1962 that modernisation of the military was addressed and even that was tardy. One of the reason why the 1971 war was delayed was because the then Chief, it is said, refused to act till the Army was equipped suitably. To imagine this was the state of affairs when India was being ruled by its own version of the Iron Lady!

    The problems that we see is the usual bureaucrat vs the military tussle for supremacy and the bureaucrats have won because they have capitalised on the legacy of the aversion of the politician about the military and added the fear aspect thanks to the happenings of the neighbourhood where the military had the same traditions as the Indian Army, but had cast them aside to usurp power! The other problem is that, unlike the western nations, Indian politicians have no experience of having served in the Armed Forces and so are quite clueless about the requirements or even what the military does or is expected to do!!

    In this unique environment, procurement is done. Politics in a vast country like India is an expensive proposition. Therefore, many view Armed Forces procurement as a cash cow, given the fact that very few understand strategy or even the military. Therefore, procurement remains as opaque as ever where vested interests can play ducks and drakes, so to say. And even when a deal is effected, vested interests raise issues giving it a twist that it was a crooked deal. This prevents even a done deal from being implemented till cleared by various Inquiries and Commissions!

    To be fair, much of the mess has been whittled down, but then it still has loopholes. To wit, take the Tatra issue that has raised a stink. The rules are clear – procurement has to be made directly and not through third parties. Tatra is Czechoslovakian in manufacture and so it should have been a direct deal. Yet, it has been done through a third party and that too the end manufacturer is a Govt Public Sector Undertaking (PSU)!!

    The fact that our Defence Research and Development Organisation and PSUs have not delivered satisfactorily adds to the woes. The reason stems from the fact that there is no military background of our scientists and manufacturers and so they operate in their own world. When given a GSQR (General Staff Qualitative Requirement), they promise the world and convince the Ministers and bureaucrats. And what they deliver is far from what is desired or what they had promised! At times, to give the indigenous defence industry a chance to mature, some equipment is forced to be taken on board.

    Notwithstanding, as in every other war, where we have been short on modern equipment, the Armed Forces have delivered. It will deliver with whatever it has, but it will have to be at a heavy cost to the lives of people who are ordered to deliver. It is but a professional hazard that one has to accept and yet, it is time that such high rate of sacrifices should be the exception and not the rule.

    In so far as the major theatre of war against Pakistan, it is Kashmir and no where else. The reason is that any territory captured in Kashmir, does not have to be returned as per the Simla Agreement. Earlier, one had to return all territories. The territory captured elsewhere is for statistics as to who captured more. Of course, there is no denying that such actions are also designed to further the overall plan.

    Given the threat of a nuclear confrontation, even this has been watered down wherein one is not aiming to threaten critical areas where it can escalate to a nuclear war.

    It is not that the Air Force or the Navy have seamless procurement machineries dovetailed into the Ministry of Defence’s requirement. It is just that it is being tomtomed to make the beleaguered Chief look bad. The Air Force has just been able to get the Govt to conclude the MMRCA (and that too, it is under a cloud and rethink, because some vendor has claimed that it was shady) and their requirement for a jet trainer has been and is languishing for years. As for the Navy, we are still wondering when will the Groshkov arrive and will there be some more glitches!

    These are problems that require to be solved and it cannot be done in a jiffy because India continues to be democracy and will continue to be one because that is the tradition that we are not ready to jettison come what may!
    • Like Like x 4
  9. Damn! I was just clicking on the "Like" option for DavidBOC regarding his P.G.Wodehouse and Yes Minister recommendations when the whole thing just "changed" to a new thread. Oh, well!

    DavidBOC = Like!
    • Like Like x 1
  10. @Rayc: Keep contributing. It's always good to hear perspectives from people in the know from organizations you don't know/ hear much about out. I don't know about your spats with some contributors here, don't care. But please do keep posting the good insights into the Indian Military way of thinking and doing things. Always interested. Especially now that the U.S. is holding so many joint exercises.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    I believe Yes Prime Minister is being televised once again in Britain in a new avatar.

    Sadly, it will not be on BBC Entertainment that we get to see out here.

    I wonder when the DVDs will be sold abroad.
  12. Regarding the USA cozying up to India. Will India succumb to American defence industry blandishments despite the USA continuing to supply arms to Pakistan? Purchasing equipment 'off the shelf' from the USA and having them build factories in India for further production might be advantageous. Or would it?
  13. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    The problem with US equipment is that there is a clause that they will monitor its use.

    No self respecting govt will accept that.

    And no self respecting Opposition will allow such a clause to go through without whipping the govt into shape!

    Notwithstanding, we still have US equipment! :rofl:

    The biggest issue with western equipment, apart from the cost, is the threat of 'sanctions' when the supply with die out at a critical time when it is needed.

    For a country that does not have a worthwhile indigenous defence industry, this turns out to be a big deal!

    This is not an issue with Russian equipment.
  14. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    Pakistan used US equipment against India in 1965 and even 1971 and Kargil.

    India, on the other hand, when given US equipment during the 1962 War, had to hand over the same to the relieving unit before they were inducted to the Western Front against Pakistan all because of this clause!