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Indian Armed Forces

The Government of India is responsible for ensuring the defence of India and every part thereof. The Supreme Command of the Indian Armed Forces vests in the President. The responsibility for national defence rests with the Cabinet. This is discharged through the Ministry of Defence, which provides the policy framework and wherewithal to the Armed Forces to discharge their responsibilities in the context of the defence of the country. The Indian Armed Forces comprise of three divisions – Indian Army, Indian Navy, and the Indian Air Force.

Contents

Security Environment - An Overview

India ’s security concerns are defined by a dynamic global security environment and the perception that South Asia region is of particular global security interest. The continuing presence of terrorist and fundamentalist forces in its neighbourhood has prompted India to maintain a high level of defence vigilance and preparedness to face any challenge to its security.

The security challenges facing India are varied and complex. The country faces a series of low intensity conflicts characterized by tribal, ethnic and left wing movements and ideologies as also the proxy war conducted by Pakistan and various radical jehadi outfits through the instrumentality of terrorism. India is also affected by the trafficking in drugs and proliferation of small arms and the fact that it is surrounded by two neighbours with nuclear weapons and missiles and history of past aggressions and war. There is also the ever present possibility of hostile radical fundamentalist elements gaining access to the weapons of mass destruction in Pakistan . The country has experienced four major conventional border wars besides an undeclared war at Kargil. India ’s response to these threats and challenges has always been restrained, measured and moderate in keeping with its peaceful outlook and reputation as a peace loving country

National Security Objectives:

India's national security objectives have evolved against a backdrop of India’s core values namely, democracy, secularism and peaceful co-existence and the national goal of social and economic development. These are:-

  • defending the country’s borders as defined by law and enshrined in the Constitution;
  • protecting the lives and property of its citizens against war, terrorism, nuclear threats and militant activities;
  • protecting the country from instability and religious and other forms of radicalism and extremism emanating from neighbouring states;
  • securing the country against the use or the threat of use of weapons of mass destruction;
  • development of material, equipment and technologies that have a bearing on India ’s security, particularly its defence preparedness through indigenous research, development and production, inter-alia to overcome restrictions on the transfer of such items;
  • promoting further co-operation and understanding with neighbouring countries and implementing mutually agreed confidence-building measures; and
  • pursuing security and strategic dialogues with major powers and key partners


Salient Features of the Security Environment

India is strategically located in relation to both continental Asia as well as the Indian Ocean region. India ’s geographical and topographical diversity, especially on its borders, poses unique challenges to our armed forces in terms of both equipment and training.

It’s peninsular shape provides India a coastline of about 7600 kms and an exclusive economic zone(EEZ) of over 2 million sq kms. The island territories in the East are 1,300 kms away from the main land, physically much closer to South East Asia . The peninsular India is adjacent to one of the most vital sea-lanes stretching from the Suez canal and Persian Gulf to the Straits of Malacca through which much of the oil from the Gulf region transits. This is an area which has attracted super power rivalries in the past and continues to be a region of heightened activity by extra regional navies on account of current global security concerns.

India’s size, strategic location, trade interests and a security environment that extends from the Persian Gulf in the west to the Straits of Malacca in the east and from the Central Asian Republics in the north to near the equator in the south, underpin India’s security response. In view of this strategic spread, it is essential for the country to maintain a credible land, air and maritime force to safeguard its security interests.

The Regional Picture

Though there have been positive developments in Afghanistan and Sri Lanka, a closer look at the neighbourhood and the wider region continues to present a disturbing picture. Many of the countries face internal instability threatening their economic progress and peace. However, the single greatest threat to peace and stability in the region is posed by the combination of terrorism nurtured in and by Pakistan for its strategic objectives, and the ingrained adventurism of the Pakistani military motivated by its obsessive and compulsive hostility towards India. Virtually every terrorist act anywhere in the world today has a Pakistani fingerprint somewhere. It is the root and epicentre of international terrorism in the region and beyond.

Afghanistan has, with the intervention of the international community, only just emerged from the dark years of a reactionary, medieval and fundamentalist regime essentially created by Pakistan. While the new Government has international legitimacy, the task of reconstruction and rebuilding the institutions is formidable. Pakistan has a vested interest in a weak and unstable Afghanistan which provides it an opportunity to meddle in the internal affairs of the country in pursuit of its quest for strategic depth vis a vis India and Central Asia .Any revival of jehadi activities supported by Pakistan is of direct security concern to India in view of their linkages with terrorism and the proxy war against India. India is also committed to international engagement in Afghanistan so that Pakistan cannot exploit the neglect and inattention of the international community, as it did after the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, to sponsor jehadi politics and training in the region.

In Pakistan, fundamentalist political parties have taken advantage of the manipulated elections that debarred the two most popular political leaders from contesting, to seize power in two provincial governments and a share in the coalition government at the Centre. Reports and evidence mount of both inward and outward proliferation of nuclear weapon technologies. Pakistan has also not lived up to its much-publicised promises to the international community to cease cross-border terrorism against India reversing even those cosmetic steps that it took at the beginning of the year, under international pressure, against fundamentalist organizations. Worse still, periodic Pakistani nuclear sabre-rattling, veiled and unveiled, has passed virtually unreprimanded by the international community.

In Bangladesh too, conservative, right wing, religious fundamentalist political parties now have a place in the coalition government. Pakistan continues to take advantage of a favourable environment in Bangladesh and of weak government in Nepal , to promote fundamentalist thinking and ISI activities in India in both these countries. In Sri Lanka, the ceasefire between the LTTE and the government is a positive development though the LTTE remains a potent non-state military force that continues to arm itself, and the danger of backsliding of the political process remains. In Myanmar, the tussle between the forces of democracy and the military government remains alive.

Further west of the region, the US-led war against Iraq has generated a series of security concerns for India notably in relation to the security of the large Indian community resident there, and of oil and energy supplies. There is also a very real risk that the US-led coalition war in Iraq will distract attention from Pakistani behaviour in its neighbourhood, particularly in India but also Afghanistan, which Pakistan will use to step up its adventurist activities in the region as it did after the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan . The war against Iraq could also aggravate the divide between the Muslim and non-Muslim world.

Against this backdrop, India remains fully committed to maintaining peace with its neighbours and stability in the region through a combination of defence-preparedness and unilateral restraint, confidence building and dialogue and expanding bilateral interactions.

In the area of defence-preparedness, it has reformed its higher defence management and streamlined procurement procedures. Its defence policy and force postures remain defensive in orientation while its nuclear policy is characterized by a commitment to no-first-use, moratorium on nuclear testing, minimum credible nuclear deterrence, and the rejection of an arms race or concepts and postures from the Cold War era.


Pakistan

Pakistan’s polity has been repeatedly hijacked by the military who have a vested interest in tension with India as it strengthens their pre-eminence in the Pakistani power structure. The past year witnessed a progressive consolidation of the role of the military, and in particular that of Gen. Musharraf, in the Pakistani polity through the “ referendum” of April 2002, the Legal Framework Order (LFO) of August, the enhanced and institutionalized role of the army in the strengthened National Security Council of Pakistan, and the patently manipulated elections of October. Together with the rise of fundamentalist MMA, these developments do not augur well for India’s security.

India has been on the receiving end of Pakistan ’s policy of a proxy war against India using terrorism for several decades now, first in the Punjab and then in Jammu & Kashmir and elsewhere. Pakistani provocation reached a dangerous point with the December 13, 2001 attack on the Parliament. A more forceful response became necessary. Additional troops were moved along the Line of Control (LoC) and the International Boundary in a state of readiness, inter-alia to prevent further infiltration of terrorists into India.

In response to these measures and international pressure, Pakistani President, General Pervez Musharraf announced in a speech on January 12, 2002, that “Pakistan will not allow its territory to be used for any terrorist activity anywhere in the world”, that “no organization will be allowed to indulge in terrorism in the name of Kashmir” and that “anyone found involved in any terrorist act would be dealt with sternly”. There was a temporary crackdown on extremists in Pakistan . Terrorist groups such as Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Tayyaba were banned and some of their financial assets were frozen. Some leaders were placed under house arrest and around 2000 low-level cadres of terrorist organizations were arrested.

There was a temporary decline in cross border infiltration and terrorist violence linked to it in the months of January-March 2002 while ‘jehadi’ cadres were advised to lie low. However, cross border infiltration and terrorist violence continued and increased as the measures were relaxed with time. On May 14, 2002 , terrorists attacked family lines of an army camp in Kaluchak, Jammu district, killing 32 civilians including 11 women and 11 children. On May 18, 2002 , India asked the Government of Pakistan to recall their High Commissioner in New Delhi in view of Pakistan’s continued support to cross border terrorism. Once again, under pressure, General Musharraf responded in his speech of May 27, 2002 with a commitment to stop cross border infiltration and terrorism on a permanent basis.

Despite Gen. Musharraf’s commitments, cross border infiltration and related terrorist violence increased from July 2002 onwards. On July 13, 2002 Pak-based terrorists attacked a low-income neighbourhood in Qasimnagar. Attacks on soft targets calculated to inflame sentiments have continued . These include the attacks on temples at Akshardham, and in Jammu and on women in J&K. As recently as on March 20, 2003 , Kashmiri Hindus living in Nadimarg, Jammu were targeted in which 24 Pundits, including 11 women and 2 children were massacred in cold blood. These incidents underscore once again that there has been no respite in terrorism from Pakistan . They also underline the need for Pakistan to take decisive steps to end infiltration on a permanent basis and wind down the infrastructure of support to terrorism.

Cross border infiltration and linked terrorist violence reached a height in the run up to the Jammu & Kashmir Legislative Assembly election. However, the successful conduct of elections to the Jammu & Kashmir Assembly with a voter participation of 43.70% in the face of terrorist threats and intimidation, and public satisfaction with the results, was seen as a vindication of the desire of the people of Jammu & Kashmir for peace and of the credibility of the elections.

On October 16, 2002 , the Government decided to re-deploy the troops from positions on the international border as the Armed Forces were deemed to have achieved the immediate objectives assigned to them. It was also decided that there would be no lowering of the vigil in Jammu & Kashmir.

India remains firmly committed to the path of dialogue and reconciliation in keeping with the Simla Agreement and the Lahore Declaration and has repeatedly called upon Pakistan to end its sponsorship of terrorism in India so that a conducive environment can be created for the resumption of bilateral dialogue. Should Pakistan move purposefully towards eradicating cross border terrorism, India will be prepared to resume bilateral dialogue to address differences and enhance cooperation. It should not be forgotten that the two most bold and meaningful initiatives for dialogue at Lahore and Agra came from India . With this in background the latest peace initiative of Prime Minister will make worthwhile progress only with end of cross-border terrorism.

China

China, India’s largest neighbour, is passing through a period of rapid economic growth and modernization with the aim of achieving great power status in the shortest time possible. India ’s border with China is almost 3,500 km long. China continues to occupy approx. 38,000 sq. km of Indian territory mainly in the Aksai Chin Area, and claims yet another 90,000 sq km in the Eastern Sector. Further, 5,180 sq. km of territory under Pak occupation in Northern Kashmir was illegally ceded to China by Pakistan in 1963. (Whilst several rounds of Border Talks have been held with China, a number of disputed pockets remain ).

China is rapidly modernising its Armed Forces. In its White Paper on National Defence issued recently, China has stressed the vital importance of maintaining international stability and a global strategic balance, as also a legal regime governing international arms control and disarmament, in order to address an international situation that is undergoing profound changes including a serious disequilibrium in the balance of military power especially between the developed and developing countries. As reported by the Chinese Government to the 16th National Party Congress in November 2002, strengthening of national defence is a “strategic task in China’s modernization drive”.

As far as India is concerned, it cannot be ignored that every major Indian city is within reach of Chinese missiles and this capability is being further augmented to include Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles(SLBMs). The asymmetry in terms of nuclear forces is pronouncedly in favour of China and is likely to get further accentuated as China responds to counter the US missile defence programme. China’s close defence relationship with Pakistan takes a particular edge in view of latter’s known belligerence and hostility to India and its acquisition of nuclear assets.

Notwithstanding these concerns, India continues its endeavour to seek a long term and stable relationship with China, based on the principles of Panchsheel, mutual sensitivity to each other’s concerns and equality and is committed to the process of dialogue to resolve all outstanding differences. Some Confidence Building Measures(CBMs) have been initiated and while these are bearing fruit incrementally, the pace of progress has been less than satisfactory. A number of high level visits have taken place in recent years. The President of India visited China in the year 2000. This was followed by Mr. Li Peng’s visit to India in January 2001. These high level visits have improved bilateral relations and understanding of each other’s viewpoint thereby contributing to further reduction in tension.

Important developments marking the progress of India-China relations in 2002-03 included the initiation of direct Delhi-Beijing flights, the first meeting of the India-China dialogue mechanism on counter terrorism, the completion of the process of exchange of maps for clarification of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Middle Sector, the implementation of the MOU (signed during Premier Zhu’s visit) on sharing hydrological data from the upper reaches of the Brahmaputra and accordance of ‘Approved Tourist Destination Status’ to India by China. The Joint Working Group on the Boundary Question met in its 14th session in November 2002. The first informal Foreign Minister level India-China-Russia dialogue took place in September 2002 on the sidelines of the UNGA. Interaction in other agreed dialogue mechanisms also continued.

India has, of late, commenced some cooperation with the armed forces of China . Naval Ships of both the countries have been exchanging visits and some of India ’s mid level officers are undergoing courses in Chinese institutions. During 2002-2003, exchange of high level defence delegations continued.

Bangladesh

India’s relation with Bangladesh is characterized by both affinity and occasional friction. Key security concerns relate to the problem of uncontrolled migration, which Bangladesh refuses to recognize, across the 4,000 kms common boundary, the presence and activities of Indian insurgent groups and leaders from the north-east of India on Bangladeshi soil which it refuses to acknowledge, the rising influence of political parties and organizations of radical Islamic and fundamentalist orientation within and outside the coalition government led by the Bangladesh National Party, and border demarcation and border management problems which give rise to ugly incidents from time to time. Border management problems, such as smuggling, illegal immigration, insurgency, trafficking of women and children, and the construction, repair and maintenance of boundary-related structures are addressed through Border Coordination Conferences between the Border Security Force (BSF) and Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) while issues such as exchange of enclaves and adverse possessions are addressed by the Joint Boundary Working Groups (JBWGs) constituted for the purpose. Following the elections, India continued with its policy of close engagement with its eastern neighbour discussing all issues in a forthright manner.

Nepal

Relations between India and Nepal have consistently been close and extensive, reflecting the historical, geographical, cultural and linguistic links between the two nations. In keeping with this close relationship, several high-level interactions took place between India and Nepal . Defence relations too have been traditionally close.

During the year, Nepal was beset on the one hand by a political and constitutional crisis and on the other, by a growing Maoist insurgency and violence that had spread to almost all the districts of Nepal, with mid-West to Western districts as thrust areas.

Another area of growing concern for India’s security is the increased activities of Pak ISI and terrorist organizations amongst Nepal’s Muslim minority.

Sri Lanka

The ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka has, over the years, extracted a severe political and security cost for India, internally and externally, that goes beyond the assassination of a former Prime Minister through a terrorist act and serious casualties incurred by the Indian Armed Forces in an effort to ameliorate the situation. It has created the possibility for countries hostile or unfriendly to India to establish a foothold there in a manner inimical to India ’s security interests. The LTTE remains a proscribed terrorist organization in India and its leader, a proclaimed offender under the law.

The keystone of the Government of India’s policy towards the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka is a firm commitment to the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka and to the restoration of a lasting peace through a peaceful, negotiated settlement that meets the just aspirations of all elements of Sri Lankan society. On the political front, India continues to support the activities of the Sri Lankan Government towards the Peace Process. The Government of India welcomed the ceasefire agreement stating that it would provide an opportunity to both sides to move forward towards a substantive dialogue for a negotiated political settlement of the ethnic conflict.

Myanmar

Myanmar remains an area of security interest for India not only on account of the activities of north-eastern insurgent groups that have set up camps across the Indian border, but also because of the activities of countries working against India’s legitimate security concerns and the repercussions of the tussle between the forces of democracy and military government on these interests. India welcomes the greater openness of the Myanmar government in its external relations and steps towards political reconciliation, internally.

Bhutan

India shares a relationship based on close friendship, good neighbourliness and mutual trust with Bhutan underpinned by a strong and diverse mutually beneficial partnership in the sphere of economic and social development and a tradition of high-level visits, most recently the vist to New Delhi by King of Bhutan.

Traditionally, Bhutan has been sensitive and mindful of India’s security concerns. The two countries continue to be in close touch with each other on the issue of presence of ULFA-Bodo militants in Southern Bhutan .

Afghanistan

India is closely watching the changing scenario in Afghanistan since it has ramifications on the security scenario of the region and the country, including in the state of Jammu and Kashmir . India would not like to see Afghanistan once again becoming a breeding ground for terrorism, or a victim of terrorism sponsored from across its borders. India was amongst the first countries to appoint a Defence Attaché in Kabul . India-Afghanistan ties continued to expand and strengthen during the year .

In general, the situation in Afghanistan has improved. However, the security situation in crucial parts of Afghanistan is still not stable. Two senior ministers have been assassinated. Armed clashes have been taking place between different groups in Northern and Western Afghanistan . Of particular concern are the signs of the regrouping of the Taliban and Al Qaeda remnants and the forces of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar in the southern and eastern Afghanistan .

Central Asian Republics (CARS)

The strategic map of Central Asia has changed almost unrecognisably since the disintegration of the former Soviet Union . Post Cold War, it has become a theatre of a new ‘great game’ not only because of its strategic location but also its natural resources, notably oil and natural gas. Since 9/11, it has also acquired a new layer of strategic interest because of its vantage point vis-à-vis the central security concerns of the region namely terrorism in its local, regional and global aspects. Pakistani vanguards, including the ISI are widely viewed as continuing their destabilizing activities of recruiting and training fundamentalist elements and encouraging radical movements in the Central Asian Republics . This has the twin objectives of extending their influence in the region and promoting anti-India activities. Major players are actively using defence diplomacy to advance their interests.

Central Asia is an area of vital importance to India not only on account of its geographical proximity and India’s historical and cultural links with the region, but also because of the common challenge they face from jehadi terrorism. Relations, based on a shared commitment to open and progressive societies, secularism and democracy, have been reinforced by similarity of views in the fight against terrorism. India and countries of Central Asia also share views with regard to checking the menace of drugs trafficking.

Relations with Central Asian countries have been informed by a shared interest in mutual benefit and all round growth. Economic relations are showing steady improvement. Raksha Mantri visited Tajikisthan in April 2002 and Uzbekistan in February 2003. Other senior level visits also took place. In the sphere of defence, cooperation is taking the form of a security dialogue and training of armed forces personnel many of whom are presently undergoing courses in Indian defence training establishments.

The Asia-Pacific

Reverberations of religious fundamentalism and terrorism were heard in parts of South East Asia too especially in Indonesia where a blast in October 2002 took toll of about one hundred tourists in Bali. The Bali bombings focussed international attention on South East Asia as a nodal point in international terrorism and an emerging hub of militant Islam. This prompted the US to step up its military presence in, and assistance to the region and to seek alternative solutions to the problem of terrorism ranging from cooperative security to controversial pre-emptive doctrines. Elsewhere in Asia , the stand-off on DPRK’s nuclear programme set off alarms regarding DPRK’s nuclear intentions and the source of some of its nuclear technologies.

Given that India shares maritime boundaries with some of the countries of the South East Asia and is within the periphery of the Asia-Pacific, these developments have relevance for India. Keeping this in view, India has initiated discussions with the governments concerned on terrorism and related issues such as trafficking in drugs, people and small arms, piracy etc. At the India-ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh in November 2002, the Prime Minister conveyed India’s decision to subscribe to the ASEAN Declaration on Terrorism, and also willingness to enter into a similar declaration on India-ASEAN cooperation in this field.

Defence cooperation relationships with countries of South-east Asia and the Pacific have been growing steadily focussing mainly on exchanges of high-level visits, strategic dialogues, port calls, training exchanges and some sourcing of defence equipment. Prospects of their further development are good. Mechanisms for defence cooperation already exist with Malaysia, Vietnam , Indonesia, Australia and Laos, and more are under process of conclusion. The 4th Malaysia-India Defence Committee meeting held in September 2002 and the 2nd India-Australia Strategic Dialogue held in March 2003 provided opportunities to discover new areas of convergence and cooperation in security matters. Defence exchanges between India and Japan and also the ROK reflected the mutual recognition that strengthened cooperation between them was a positive factor for maintenance of peace and stability

West Asia / Gulf

India’s security environment is closely linked to that of the neighbouring West Asia region. As a member of the international community, India has been gravely concerned with the vicious cycle of violence and counter-violence and the consequent serious deterioration of the security situation in West Asia and has repeatedly called for de-escalation of tensions.

In the Persian Gulf, the growing tension between the US and Iraq finally exploded into war on March 20, 2003 with the failure of diplomatic efforts under the auspices of the UN Security Council. The full political and security implications are still to unfold and will take some time to assess, but it would be safe to assume that they will be far reaching in terms of their strategic impact.

Europe

India’s relations with the European Union and individual member countries in the field of defence and security cover a broad spectrum of activities including training exchanges, joint exercises and defence procurement, production and R&D. A mechanism for a security dialogue exists with France at the highest executive levels. Mechanisms for defence cooperation also exist with the UK and Italy. Fresh agreements on defence cooperation providing for an enhanced level of cooperation were signed with Italy and Poland in February 2003 during the visits of the Italian Defence Minister and the Polish Prime Minister to India . Defence-related exchanges have also been expanding with other countries in Europe like Germany, the Czech Republic, Ukraine and Belarus . Cooperation with Europe on defence procurement and production could be greater still if it were not for mechanisms that introduce uncertainties in the fulfilment of contracts on extraneous political grounds. The evolving relationship with France shows that there is a good potential for a path-breaking defence-industrial relationship in areas of advanced technologies cutting across the normal grain of North-South relations as epitomized during the visit of the Prime Minister of France to the Aero India Air Show in Bangalore in February 2003.

Russia

Indo-Russian relations pursued a steady, all-round and strategic course during the year covering the gamut of political, defence, security and economic fields. The two sides continued to deepen their consultations on strategic and mutual security concerns.

Bilateral defence cooperation was fortified through several meetings and visits by the high dignitaries of the two countries. Raksha Mantri visited the Russian Federation in April 10-13, 2002 . The third session of the Inter-Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation (IGC-MTC) was held in Moscow in January, 2003, co-chaired by Raksha Mantri and the Minister of Science and Technology and Industry of the Russian Federation Mr. Ilya Klebanov. Discussions covered acquisition, licensed production, R&D, product support and new areas and forms of cooperation in the defence field.

United States of America

Following the end of the Cold War and in response to the changing international environment, Indo-U.S. relations are undergoing a qualitative transformation. Cooperation and consultations have broadened and diversified considerably. Both the countries have recognised that closer Indo-US relations would be an important and a positive factor both for stability of the region as well as in the global affairs.

There has been a significant progress in defence and security relationship between India and the United States during last year. As part of the enhanced bilateral engagement on these matters, there were several important bilateral visits and meetings in the context of cross-border terrorism by Pakistan and in pursuit of a shared objective of building a strategic relationship. With a view to accelerating the pace of Indo-U.S. defence cooperation, the apex level Defence Policy Group (DPG) met for a second time in May 2002 after its resumption in December 2001. Apart from the DPG, bilateral Executive Steering Groups of the Army, Navy and Air Force, the Security Cooperation Group (to advance a defence supply relationship) and the Joint Technical Group (to advance R & D collaboration in defence) have also been meeting or are scheduled to meet. The two countries have conducted mutually beneficial combined exercises in India and United States besides stepping up training exchanges.

The terrorist attacks in the United States on September 11, 2001 and on the Parliament on December 13, 2001 have led to a deepening of Indo-US cooperation in combating international terrorism.

Terrorism

India has been a victim of terrorism for many decades, much before the West experienced its deadly reality on September 11, 2001 . The terrorist menace in Jammu and Kashmir has its roots in Pakistan and is supported financially and materially by the government and institutions of that country. The Indian Armed Forces have dealt with the problem of cross-border terrorism with a multi-pronged strategy that includes psychological warfare, innovative military tactics and counter intelligence methods. These efforts have met with reasonable success but this is a prolonged battle. India's long experience in tackling terrorism can be of valuable help to other countries that are facing similar challenges now.

Infiltration: Despite the assurances of the Pakistani Government, infiltration continues across the border.

For any terrorist movement to be contained, the Government’s resolve and the security forces’ firmness are a must. India ’s fight against terrorism has been a long and arduous one and the Indian Armed Forces are fully geared to handle any problem that may arise in future. It is important that the state support for any form of terrorism must cease. Terrorist organisations have long arms and global reach. The world, therefore, has to fight a united battle by pooling resources in order to remove this scourge from the face of the earth.

India’s Nuclear Policy

India remains a firm and consistent proponent of general and complete disarmament and attaches the highest priority to global nuclear disarmament. India’s policy on disarmament also takes into account changes that have taken place in the world, especially in the 1990s. The nuclear tests of May 1998 do not dilute India ’s commitment to this long-held objective. As a nuclear weapon State , India is even more conscious of its responsibility in this regard and, as in the past, continues to take initiatives in pursuit of global nuclear disarmament both individually and collectively. The steps that were announced after the tests and the initiatives that India has taken since, strengthen this commitment.

India’s nuclear weapons capability is meant only for self-defence and seeks only to ensure that India’s security, independence and integrity are not threatened in the future. India is not interested in a nuclear arms race. This is the rationale behind the two pillars of India’s nuclear policy – minimum deterrence and no-first use. The determination of the profile of this deterrent, including accurate and refined delivery systems, is a sovereign responsibility.

After concluding the series of tests of May 1998, India announced a voluntary moratorium on further underground nuclear test explosions. In announcing this moratorium, India accepted the core obligation of a test ban and also addressed the general wish of the international community to foreswear testing. This moratorium continues, subject to the supreme national interests, a provision granted under the CTBT to every country. India has also announced its willingness to move towards a de jure formalisation of this voluntary undertaking.


Planning Considerations

The security environment that has been highlighted above clearly brings out four key elements that are fundamental determinants of our security planning. These are:

(a) the Indian Armed Forces have a two front obligation, which require them to safeguard the security of our borders with Pakistan as well as with China ;

(b) India is not a member of any military alliance or strategic grouping, nor is this consistent with our policies necessitating a certain independent deterrent capability;

(c) due to external abetment, India’s Armed Forces are involved in internal security functions on a relatively larger scale than is normal requiring a force structure that will be able to cope with it; and

(d) India’s interests in the North Indian Ocean, including the security of our EEZ and Island territories, highlight the need for a blue water Naval capability commensurate with our responsibilities.


Indian Army

The basic responsibility of the Army is to safeguard the territorial integrity of the nation against external aggression. Due to the country’s long borders encompassing different geographical and climatic conditions such as desert terrain on the west, snow-covered mountains in the north and thick rainfed mountainous jungles in the east, the Army has to constantly prepare itself for diverse challenges. In addition, the Army is often required to assist the civil administration during internal security disturbances and in the maintenance of law and order, in organising relief operations during natural calamities like floods, earthquakes and cyclones and in the maintenance of essential services. Demands on the Army have increased manifold due to continuous deployment of its forces in intense counter insurgency operations in Jammu & Kashmir and the North East parts of the country. To achieve these objectives, the Army has to be constantly modernised, suitably structured, equipped and trained.

The Indian Army is organised into five regional commands

  • HQ Central Command, Lucknow ;
  • HQ Eastern Command, Calcutta ;
  • HQ Northern Command, Udhampur;
  • HQ Western Command, Chandimandir; and
  • HQ Southern Command, Pune.

In addition, there is a Army Training Command at Shimla for the purpose of laying down the training policy for the Army.

The Indian Army is divided into the following two broad categories:-

Arms

Arms cover those troops which carry out actual operations. They consist of

  • Infantry (including air-borne and mechanised)
  • Armoured
  • Aviation
  • Artillery
  • Air Defence Artillery
  • Engineers
  • Signals and
  • Intelligence

These are organised into units and sub-units at various echelons of commands.

Services

The remaining components of the Army are the Services. Their primary duty is to provide the logistic and administration for the Army.

For more detail please do visit http://indianarmy.nic.in/


Indian Navy

India is a maritime nation strategically straddling the Indian Ocean with or substantive seaborne trade. The country’s economic well being is thus very closely linked to our ability to keep our sea-lanes free and open at all times. Besides, India has other maritime interests as well. Our island territories situated on our Western and Eastern seaboards are at considerable distances away from the mainland. To ensure their sustained development, umbilical linkages with the mainland and maritime security protection are essential pre-requisites of our maritime security. Our offshore assets within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of 2.02 million sq. kms, fisheries and deep sea interests, major and minor harbours and the overall seaward security of long coastline and island territories are other vital aspects of our maritime dimension and Navy’s responsibilities.

Indian Navy has consciously taken the difficult route of indigenisation in consonance with the national endeavour towards self-reliance. The Navy embarked upon a programme for indigenous construction of ships and development of major sub systems, sensors and weapon systems with the help of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Defence Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs).

The Indian Navy is organised into three regional commands

  • HQ Eastern Naval Command, Visakhapatnam
  • HQ Western Naval Command, Mumbai; and
  • HQ Southern Naval Command, Kochi

The Indian Navy is divided into the following broad categories

  • Administration
  • Logistics and Material
  • Training
  • The Fleets
  • The Naval Aviation and
  • The Submarine Arm

For more detail please do visit http://indiannavy.nic.in/


Indian Airforce

The Indian Air Force (IAF) today, having completed more than six decades of dedicated service to the nation, is a modern, technology-intensive force distinguished by its commitment to excellence and professionalism. Keeping space with the demands of contemporary advancements, the IAF continues to modernise in a phased manner and today it stands as a credible air power as the nation marches into the next millennium.

With the ever escalating costs of operations, great emphasis is being placed on cost effective training, reducing expenditure, optimising output and minimising wastage. The Air Force has implemented a number of measures to enhance the quality of life of its personnel in Key welfare areas of housing, education and hostel facilities.

In addition to the traditional wartime roles of the IAF of counter air, counter surface, strategic and combat support operations, the Air Force has provided significant aid to civil authorities during natural calamities. The Siachen glacier lifeline continues to be monitored by the Indian Air Force, fully supporting the Indian Army in fighting on the world’s highest battlefield. The IAF has also provided aid to civil authorities for the large scale movement of military and para military personnel to maintain law and order as well as to cater for the needs of a large number of airmen and jawans in remote and inaccessible outposts.

The Indian Air Force has seven commands, of which five are operational and two functional, namely :

  • HQ Central Air Command, Allahabad
  • HQ Eastern Air Command, Shillong
  • HQ Western Air Command, New Delhi
  • HQ Southern Air Command, Thiruvananthapuram
  • HQ South-Western Air Command, Gandhi Nagar
  • HQ Maintenance Command, Nagpur and
  • HQ Training Command, Bangalore

The Indian Air Force is divided into the following broad categories :

  • Flying operations
  • Maintenance & Logistics
  • Administration and
  • Training

For more detail please do visit http://indianairforce.nic.in/

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