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Find The Money First

The Standing Committee on Defence (SCoD) routinely laments, and admonishes the MoD officials for inadequacy of the defence budget. But it has not been able to suggest anything better than that the defence budget should be increased to 3 per cent of the GDP which begs the question where the money is going to come from. On its part, the MoD seems to think that the problem can be solved by delegating more financial powers to the Services, tweaking the procurement procedures, and enforcing indigenisation of defence production by banning import of defence items. These are not practical solutions, as these skirt the basic question: Where is the money?

Improve Acquisition Procedures

While financial outlays are important, much can be achieved in military modernisation though improved acquisition procedures, informed decision making, improved productivity of the public sector workforce, co-opting the private sector in a big way in the manufacturing process and by creating a business-friendly eco-system. We also need to shed our ideological chains with respect to exports of weapons and platforms. Thankfully, this has begun.

Indigenous Defence Technologies

In the wars of 1962, 1965 and even 1971, most of the technologies used by the Indian Armed Forces were not indigenous. Our troops were in the transformation stage and thus, they were dependent almost totally on foreign technologies and this was a lesson for us. In 1958, the government[Read More…]

No Half-hearted Steps

For India the worst-case scenario is a two-front war which would have to be managed with external support—militarily and diplomatically to maintain status quo. Our present war fighting doctrines demand large ground holding formations, thereby eating up our meagre resources with little left for modernisation and reorganisation.

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