Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

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jaysimha
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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby jaysimha » 27 Jan 2018 10:08

ramana wrote:jaysimha your join date shows 20 Dec 2017. And post count 110!!!

You have been most productive new member.
Thanks for your efforts in collating DRDO published info.

Keep up your enthusiasm and don't let it go down.


I am highly obliged by your kind words of encouragement..
Will try keep up to your words..

meanwhile Came across latest Army news letter in hindi,, English one will follow as and when i get ..

https://indianarmy.nic.in/writereaddata/documents/HindiBaatcheet240118.pdf

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nelson » 27 Jan 2018 14:01

Akshay Kapoor wrote:
nachiket wrote:x-post from LCA thread


Kapoor saab, this is incredible. Could you elaborate on this phenomenon a bit? Is this a direct result of the officer shortage? Also what practical problems does this create?


This has been going on for some time but its become really bad now and is having serious consequences on ops. I don't like talking about it too much as one has to be very careful about demoralizing troops and officers further. But in short, this is the problem:

As you probably know the bureaucracy over the years has become incredibly powerful in defence matters and have basically set themselves up as the definition of 'civilian control' where as in every other democracy it is the political leadership who have this task. Not only this over successive pay commissions they have downgraded the armed forces in terms of equivalence of rank and thus pay and benefits.

So now the situation is that service chief = a secy to govt of India. But there are 150-250 bureaucrats of the rank of secy to Govt of India and there is only one chief of each service. Take the army - there are at any time about 40-45 k officers in the army and one chief. There about 5000 IAS officers. So the ratio of a secy to total officers is is 250/5000 which is 1:20. The ratio of army officers to COAS 1 : 45,000 !

Let that sink in - 1:20 vs 1:45000

Now as you go down the ranks this becomes worse because almost every IAS officer reaches Additional Secy but just about 10-12 army officers reach the equivalent rank - Army Commander. Now because the pay commission (run by bureaucrats) equates pay to rank and banding over the years the pay of army officers could only be increased if they were given higher ranks. So now a Lt Col does a Major's and sometimes even a Capt's job and of course still earns less than his equivalent in the IAS or IPS (because there are many many anomalies). In fact the worse is that MES (Military Engineering Service) civilian officers who do jobs interchangiby with army officers in the MES and are in the chain of command now get higher pay and perks than their army counterparts who have actually served in field areas and been in combat. In fact they have now refused to serve in the chain of command and a separate set of posts equivalent to Major Generals has been created for them. This is shocking.

Another contributing factor as you pointed out is that obviously because of the shortage of officers there is restriction in number of Majors and Capt so Lt Cols have to do the job.

But more of that later.

Coming back to the issue of Lt Cols commanding companies, the problems are :

1. They are older and less physically fit for the job which is a young mans job. Same problem with our COs who are Cols instead of Lt Cols in the Pak army. Sop our COs are much older than Pak. This is only compensated with the fact that Pak COs don't lead but this is a huge operational problem for us.
2. The aukaad of a Col in India is nothing. He is like a leper in the govt. But the aukad of his equiavlent SSP or IAS officer is great. And the aukaad of the Paki Lt Col we all know is great. So what happens - deep demoralization. He does not have the authority to help the troops when they go on leave and find their land stolen by local mafia (often in league with police), or some dispute with family on land etc. In the old days (my dads time CO would write a letter and it was enough for DC or SSP to help). Today (and its been the case for some time) they don't even do that because they know the DC and SSP will laught it away. This reduces the confidence that troops have. After all CO is the father of the batallion/regt and is supposed to solve all problems. But when he can do nothing his aura reduces. This erodes the basic ethos and the magic of the army. Army can fight with INSAS and old weapons but we cannot survive the loss of the ethos. And neither can the nation.
3. At Company Commander level the problem is worse. CO Coy is a young man's job and you can well imagine the problems it creates in an army here officers lead from the front. They have older families, almost all are married and when casualties happen there are more lives that get hurt. That's why subconsciously they tend to be more cautious and take lesser risks.
4. A corollary of that is they also refer everything up to CO. Command is eroded if its not exercised. Its like butter - either use it or it melts away. Command needs to be excercised not refered up all the time. This is creating big problems of initiative. And CO gets overburdened doing jobs a Major should be doing.
5. Troops also realise that officer has less authority and this hurts their morale too.

Its a big problem and I have been saying this for years.


Without alluding to status equivalence, it is safe to state that the age requirements for commanding a company or battalion are best met now, leaving out the actual war periods. Regarding Lt Cols commanding companies in Infantry or other arms they are few and far in between, since they make a Lt Col in 13 years service and Col in 15 years. The average service of a company commander could be put as 10 years corresponding to an age of 32 years which is very good. Similarly, the average service of a battalion commander is 16 years corresponding to an age of 38 years which is also very good, IMHO.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby jaysimha » 27 Jan 2018 15:58

Image

Development of a Smart and Intelligent Soldier Jacket by IIT-Delhi

http://www.iitd.ac.in/content/development-smart-and-intelligent-soldier-jacket-0

Joint Advanced Technology Centre (JATC) at IIT Delhi has a research vertical Smart and Intelligent Textile (SITEX). Under this vertical, faculties and researchers have been working on development of smart soldier

Image

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby srinebula » 27 Jan 2018 23:27

Sir, thanks for elaborating on this topic.
Is the current Govt. taking any steps to improve the situation?
This seems to be a deep problem and may take time to fully correct the situation.
One thought I had was regarding the rank of service chiefs. Can the Govt. declare that service chiefs are at cabinet rank? would that help?
I am a complete noob in military matters. Sorry if what I said does not make any sense.

Akshay Kapoor wrote:
nachiket wrote:x-post from LCA thread


Kapoor saab, this is incredible. Could you elaborate on this phenomenon a bit? Is this a direct result of the officer shortage? Also what practical problems does this create?


This has been going on for some time but its become really bad now and is having serious consequences on ops. I don't like talking about it too much as one has to be very careful about demoralizing troops and officers further. But in short, this is the problem:

As you probably know the bureaucracy over the years has become incredibly powerful in defence matters and have basically set themselves up as the definition of 'civilian control' where as in every other democracy it is the political leadership who have this task. Not only this over successive pay commissions they have downgraded the armed forces in terms of equivalence of rank and thus pay and benefits.

So now the situation is that service chief = a secy to govt of India. But there are 150-250 bureaucrats of the rank of secy to Govt of India and there is only one chief of each service. Take the army - there are at any time about 40-45 k officers in the army and one chief. There about 5000 IAS officers. So the ratio of a secy to total officers is is 250/5000 which is 1:20. The ratio of army officers to COAS 1 : 45,000 !

Let that sink in - 1:20 vs 1:45000

Now as you go down the ranks this becomes worse because almost every IAS officer reaches Additional Secy but just about 10-12 army officers reach the equivalent rank - Army Commander. Now because the pay commission (run by bureaucrats) equates pay to rank and banding over the years the pay of army officers could only be increased if they were given higher ranks. So now a Lt Col does a Major's and sometimes even a Capt's job and of course still earns less than his equivalent in the IAS or IPS (because there are many many anomalies). In fact the worse is that MES (Military Engineering Service) civilian officers who do jobs interchangiby with army officers in the MES and are in the chain of command now get higher pay and perks than their army counterparts who have actually served in field areas and been in combat. In fact they have now refused to serve in the chain of command and a separate set of posts equivalent to Major Generals has been created for them. This is shocking.

Another contributing factor as you pointed out is that obviously because of the shortage of officers there is restriction in number of Majors and Capt so Lt Cols have to do the job.

But more of that later.

Coming back to the issue of Lt Cols commanding companies, the problems are :

1. They are older and less physically fit for the job which is a young mans job. Same problem with our COs who are Cols instead of Lt Cols in the Pak army. Sop our COs are much older than Pak. This is only compensated with the fact that Pak COs don't lead but this is a huge operational problem for us.
2. The aukaad of a Col in India is nothing. He is like a leper in the govt. But the aukad of his equiavlent SSP or IAS officer is great. And the aukaad of the Paki Lt Col we all know is great. So what happens - deep demoralization. He does not have the authority to help the troops when they go on leave and find their land stolen by local mafia (often in league with police), or some dispute with family on land etc. In the old days (my dads time CO would write a letter and it was enough for DC or SSP to help). Today (and its been the case for some time) they don't even do that because they know the DC and SSP will laught it away. This reduces the confidence that troops have. After all CO is the father of the batallion/regt and is supposed to solve all problems. But when he can do nothing his aura reduces. This erodes the basic ethos and the magic of the army. Army can fight with INSAS and old weapons but we cannot survive the loss of the ethos. And neither can the nation.
3. At Company Commander level the problem is worse. CO Coy is a young man's job and you can well imagine the problems it creates in an army here officers lead from the front. They have older families, almost all are married and when casualties happen there are more lives that get hurt. That's why subconsciously they tend to be more cautious and take lesser risks.
4. A corollary of that is they also refer everything up to CO. Command is eroded if its not exercised. Its like butter - either use it or it melts away. Command needs to be excercised not refered up all the time. This is creating big problems of initiative. And CO gets overburdened doing jobs a Major should be doing.
5. Troops also realise that officer has less authority and this hurts their morale too.

Its a big problem and I have been saying this for years.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nam » 28 Jan 2018 01:37

Let me ask uncomfortable question, from a person who is not aware of government ways of doing things.

Why do Indian army officers need to compare themselves with a useless bunch of 5000 people? I can understand at a IA chief level, he deals with IAS on a daily basis, so it might effect decision making. But why would, say a major general or a brigadier worry about some joker has a higher grade or pay?

In terms of respect thousands will line up the streets to pay respect to a fallen soldier. They become heroes and legend for future generations.
Not a panwala will come to see a dead IAS.

Yes we want our officers to well paid, however the reality is that a 50k strong organisation will not have the same payscale as 5k organisation. I am for reducing IAS perks and salary to half of what they are paid, however the money saved may not even give 20% increment to defense officer corps, purely because of the size.

Maintaining a 1.3 army is not cheap and like every other nation we have to balance defence with what we can afford. This is the bitter reality.

Regarding power of IAS, agree needs to curtailed. This can only be done by service members joining politics in large numbers. There is no point complaining on the sidelines. Babus respect political power.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby CalvinH » 28 Jan 2018 03:56

Comparison with IAS is not right. May be true for bits and pieces but the argument is not valid as whole. Plus the comparison of what is the Aukaad (t) is wrong at many levels.

Yes, the social mileage and prestige that Army officers used to enjoy is coming down. This is part and parcel of a growing economy where comparison metric is financial status, or ability to achieve a particular financial status.

The simplified answer to correct the imbalance is to bring down the hyper inflated powers of Babus. Plus finding ways to generate more respect and admiration about our armed forces in general population. This will compensate for lack of balance that our armed force personnel are feeling vis-a-vis their civilian counterparts. A simple act of people offering the armed forces guy to move up in the queue is an example of this respect.

Plus we need to find ways to provide a fitting post retirement career path for Armed forces officers.

PS: The ratio 1:20 is only correct if Secy level officer manages only IAS officers. Thats not the case. If you count the Gazetted level officers and above under a secretary the ratio will go up substantially. Also The secy level officers would be <100. Not all of them are IAS though majority of them will be from IAS.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Anoop » 28 Jan 2018 07:36

In my opinion, the single biggest impact would be if the problems that soldiers and ex servicemen face regarding land grab, document validity, legal issues, pensions and promised govt support for families of those martyred or disabled, are solved. That needs the respect and sensitivity of the civil administration at the panchayat, zilla parishad and district levels. In other words, a systemic overhaul of the current civil-military imbalance starting from the grass roots.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Manish_P » 28 Jan 2018 11:48

Army building three railway Mumbai bridges with material brought from Doklam war store

The material for the three bailey bridges that the army is constructing in the city has arrived from a war store on the India-China border, very close to Doklam, the site of last year's 73-day standoff between India and China. The material for the foot over-bridges (FOBs)—to come up at Elphinstone Road-Parel, Currey Road and Ambivli stations—arrived by train on January 6 .


The bridges will have the capacity to carry eight tonnes' load—they can carry all types of vehicles except the army tank—and will be made up of high-carbon steel that can last for more than 50 years.


Brigadier Dheeraj Mohan, commandant, Bombay Engineering Group and Centre, said, "The bridges will be sturdy. For example, there is bridge built in 1993 in Leh where there is heavy snowfall for six months but it is still strong." Bailey bridge was developed by the British during World War II.

"The cost of the Elphinstone Road-Parel FOB is Rs 8 crore, which is 30-40% higher than what the railways' would have spent had they done it themselves. The cost is more as the work had to be completed on an urgent basis," he added.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby chetak » 28 Jan 2018 13:15

nam wrote:Let me ask uncomfortable question, from a person who is not aware of government ways of doing things.

Why do Indian army officers need to compare themselves with a useless bunch of 5000 people? I can understand at a IA chief level, he deals with IAS on a daily basis, so it might effect decision making. But why would, say a major general or a brigadier worry about some joker has a higher grade or pay?

In terms of respect thousands will line up the streets to pay respect to a fallen soldier. They become heroes and legend for future generations.
Not a panwala will come to see a dead IAS.

Yes we want our officers to well paid, however the reality is that a 50k strong organisation will not have the same payscale as 5k organisation. I am for reducing IAS perks and salary to half of what they are paid, however the money saved may not even give 20% increment to defense officer corps, purely because of the size.

Maintaining a 1.3 army is not cheap and like every other nation we have to balance defence with what we can afford. This is the bitter reality.

Regarding power of IAS, agree needs to curtailed. This can only be done by service members joining politics in large numbers. There is no point complaining on the sidelines. Babus respect political power.


Just answer these

Why do IAS, IPS and other unrelated govt baboo(n)s need to assert their status and authority over the IA??

Don't they have their own effing jobs to do, without poking their noses into the affairs of the IA??

Or have all these morons purposely misunderstood the meaning of "civilian authority" over the IA??

Which part of the constitution defines the IAS/IPS baboo(n) as "civilian authority"??

or like our great philandering bharat ratna PM, are they still petrified of an army coup??

whose father what goes, if the IA has equivalent status??

Are they going to refuse to do their duty in cashmere/elsewhere if their status is restored??

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Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Peregrine » 28 Jan 2018 14:57

Mods please "transfer" the following post to its Rightful Thread - Thanks in Advance

Seychelles allows India military infra on island

NEW DELHI: Overcoming a hiccup, India and Seychelles signed a revised agreement that will allow India to build military infrastructure on Assumption Island, that will expand its strategic reach in the Indian Ocean.

Foreign secretary S Jaishankar signed the agreement in Victoria on Saturday.

In a statement, Jaishankar said, "India and Seychelles have drawn up a cooperation agenda that covers within its purview joint efforts in anti-piracy operations, and enhanced EEZ surveillance and monitoring to prevent intrusions by potential economic offenders indulging in illegal fishing, poaching, drug and human trafficking. The cooperation is further exemplified by the operationalisation of the Coastal Surveillance Radar System in March 2016, and our commitment to augment Seychelles' defence assets and capability. "

After meeting Jaishankar, the island nation's President, Danny Faure, said "Today we will sign a revised version of the Agreement for the development of facilities on Assumption Island. This project is of utmost importance to Seychelles, and it attests to the kinship and affinity that exists between our two countries. We are proud to have India as a partner in realising our development aspirations."

The agreement had been signed in 2015 during the visit of PM Modi but it ran into trouble because it had not been ratified by the Seychelles parliament by the previous president, James Michel. The first sign that the agreement was in trouble came in August 2017, when Faure said in a press conference that it would have to be re-negotiated. "We would like to relook at the agreement which does not have a legal statute on the Seychelles side. But for India, it has a legal statute. We have to go back to the drawing board."

That took Jaishankar to Seychelles in October, and the two sides restarted discussions on amendments to the agreement. The negotiations were completed after the Seychelles opposition party gave a thumbs up to it.

Faure worked with the opposition and after including several amendments cleared it with his cabinet on January 22. A statement after the Seychelles cabinet meeting said, "Cabinet agreed on the main purpose of the agreement which is to provide a framework for assistance to the Government of Seychelles by the Government of India to enhance the military capabilities in control and maritime surveillance of our EEZ, protection of our EEZ and the outer islands and search and rescue in the region for the benefit of air and shipping traffic." After the signing, the agreement would be ratified by Seychelles parliament. The ratification is expected to be a formality because the new agreement has been agreed to by both government and opposition.

The agreement is very important for India, as it works hard to mark a military presence on both Seychelles and Mauritius (Agalega island), in its drive to extend its strategic footprint in the Indian Ocean.

The Faure government put the brakes on the agreement with India in 2017 — after the 2016 elections, Faure's party, People's Party lost their majority in parliament, which went to the opposition coalition, Linyon Demokratik Seselwa (LDS). Its leader, Indian-origin Wavel John Charles Ramkalawan was important to build political consensus on the agreement.

During his recent visit to India as part of the PIO parliamentarians conference in New Delhi, Ramkalawan indicated that a consensus had been achieved and the deal would be done shortly. The signing of the agreement is among the last actions by Jaishankar, who will be replaced by Vijay Gokhale as foreign secretary.

The importance of the agreement this time is that it will be more solid, having full political approval from both ruling and opposition parties in Seychelles.

Cheers Image

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby abhik » 28 Jan 2018 18:30

^^^
Any idea as to exactly what type of "military infrastructure" are we talking of? I have been hearing of foreign military bases since for ever, in Ayani (Tajikistan), Oman and where not - Bi I'm yet to see any evidence of real military power being deployed out of India's borders.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nam » 28 Jan 2018 18:41

chetak wrote:
nam wrote:Let me ask uncomfortable question, from a person who is not aware of government ways of doing things.

Why do Indian army officers need to compare themselves with a useless bunch of 5000 people? I can understand at a IA chief level, he deals with IAS on a daily basis, so it might effect decision making. But why would, say a major general or a brigadier worry about some joker has a higher grade or pay?

In terms of respect thousands will line up the streets to pay respect to a fallen soldier. They become heroes and legend for future generations.
Not a panwala will come to see a dead IAS.

Yes we want our officers to well paid, however the reality is that a 50k strong organisation will not have the same payscale as 5k organisation. I am for reducing IAS perks and salary to half of what they are paid, however the money saved may not even give 20% increment to defense officer corps, purely because of the size.

Maintaining a 1.3 army is not cheap and like every other nation we have to balance defence with what we can afford. This is the bitter reality.

Regarding power of IAS, agree needs to curtailed. This can only be done by service members joining politics in large numbers. There is no point complaining on the sidelines. Babus respect political power.


Just answer these

Why do IAS, IPS and other unrelated govt baboo(n)s need to assert their status and authority over the IA??

Don't they have their own effing jobs to do, without poking their noses into the affairs of the IA??

Or have all these morons purposely misunderstood the meaning of "civilian authority" over the IA??

Which part of the constitution defines the IAS/IPS baboo(n) as "civilian authority"??

or like our great philandering bharat ratna PM, are they still petrified of an army coup??

whose father what goes, if the IA has equivalent status??

Are they going to refuse to do their duty in cashmere/elsewhere if their status is restored??


You are talking about a bunch of people who treat Indian citizen as piece of garbage. Are you expecting them to treat defence forces differently?

So civilians and services are in the same boat with respect to babus. We all are treated as cr**p. As I said there is no point complaining about it. They can only be curbed by political power. This is why services after retirement should actively join politics.

Gen VK Singh is a perfect example. A babu who would have filed the dob case in the court, would probably be the first person to open his car door now, to make he is not in trouble.

Gen vk Singh understood the importance of being in the system to change it. Hope others realise as well.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby sum » 28 Jan 2018 19:29

abhik wrote:^^^
Any idea as to exactly what type of "military infrastructure" are we talking of? I have been hearing of foreign military bases since for ever, in Ayani (Tajikistan), Oman and where not - Bi I'm yet to see any evidence of real military power being deployed out of India's borders.

Would assume its a radar listening post?

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby chetak » 28 Jan 2018 20:14

nam wrote:
chetak wrote:
Just answer these

Why do IAS, IPS and other unrelated govt baboo(n)s need to assert their status and authority over the IA??

Don't they have their own effing jobs to do, without poking their noses into the affairs of the IA??

Or have all these morons purposely misunderstood the meaning of "civilian authority" over the IA??

Which part of the constitution defines the IAS/IPS baboo(n) as "civilian authority"??

or like our great philandering bharat ratna PM, are they still petrified of an army coup??

whose father what goes, if the IA has equivalent status??

Are they going to refuse to do their duty in cashmere/elsewhere if their status is restored??


You are talking about a bunch of people who treat Indian citizen as piece of garbage. Are you expecting them to treat defence forces differently?

So civilians and services are in the same boat with respect to babus. We all are treated as cr**p. As I said there is no point complaining about it. They can only be curbed by political power. This is why services after retirement should actively join politics.

Gen VK Singh is a perfect example. A babu who would have filed the dob case in the court, would probably be the first person to open his car door now, to make he is not in trouble.

Gen vk Singh understood the importance of being in the system to change it. Hope others realise as well.


You have missed the point by a country mile. No matter.

nam
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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nam » 28 Jan 2018 20:39

Unless there is something specific, the answer to all your questions is simple: Power.
They can bypass rules, becoz they make the rules.

Babus are the establishment. Not GOI which gets elected every 5 years.

And I answered what needs to be done to remove them from power. Not sure what else could be the answer.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby chetak » 28 Jan 2018 20:45

nam wrote:Unless there is something specific, the answer to all your questions is simple: Power.
They can bypass rules, becoz they make the rules.

Babus are the establishment. Not GOI which gets elected every 5 years.

And I answered what needs to be done to remove them from power. Not sure what else could be the answer.


why was there so much of utter panic at the "news" of an attempted coup by Gen VK Singh, spread by a house nigger like shekar coupta??

If anyone had wanted to move against the govt, it could only have happened in the decades gone by and it didn't simply because of the inherent nature of the civilizational Hindu.

This deep seated and paranoid fear among the baboo(n)s was contagious and it started with IG who mistrusted Sam Manekshaw, mainly because of his supreme confidence, the loyalty that he inspired in his men, as indeed, in the nation at large, and his immense, endearing popularity with the Indian people.

from little acorns do oak trees grow, with the willing, licentiousness complicity of the judiciary as displayed during the IG years which finally resulted in the judicial shafting of Gen VKS by the same spineless "pillar" of the Indian democracy by willfully negating/disregarding a legally issued birth certificate as recorded by valid govt authorities decades ago.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 18:22

nelson wrote:
Akshay Kapoor wrote:
This has been going on for some time but its become really bad now and is having serious consequences on ops. I don't like talking about it too much as one has to be very careful about demoralizing troops and officers further. But in short, this is the problem:

As you probably know the bureaucracy over the years has become incredibly powerful in defence matters and have basically set themselves up as the definition of 'civilian control' where as in every other democracy it is the political leadership who have this task. Not only this over successive pay commissions they have downgraded the armed forces in terms of equivalence of rank and thus pay and benefits.

So now the situation is that service chief = a secy to govt of India. But there are 150-250 bureaucrats of the rank of secy to Govt of India and there is only one chief of each service. Take the army - there are at any time about 40-45 k officers in the army and one chief. There about 5000 IAS officers. So the ratio of a secy to total officers is is 250/5000 which is 1:20. The ratio of army officers to COAS 1 : 45,000 !

Let that sink in - 1:20 vs 1:45000

Now as you go down the ranks this becomes worse because almost every IAS officer reaches Additional Secy but just about 10-12 army officers reach the equivalent rank - Army Commander. Now because the pay commission (run by bureaucrats) equates pay to rank and banding over the years the pay of army officers could only be increased if they were given higher ranks. So now a Lt Col does a Major's and sometimes even a Capt's job and of course still earns less than his equivalent in the IAS or IPS (because there are many many anomalies). In fact the worse is that MES (Military Engineering Service) civilian officers who do jobs interchangiby with army officers in the MES and are in the chain of command now get higher pay and perks than their army counterparts who have actually served in field areas and been in combat. In fact they have now refused to serve in the chain of command and a separate set of posts equivalent to Major Generals has been created for them. This is shocking.

Another contributing factor as you pointed out is that obviously because of the shortage of officers there is restriction in number of Majors and Capt so Lt Cols have to do the job.

But more of that later.

Coming back to the issue of Lt Cols commanding companies, the problems are :

1. They are older and less physically fit for the job which is a young mans job. Same problem with our COs who are Cols instead of Lt Cols in the Pak army. Sop our COs are much older than Pak. This is only compensated with the fact that Pak COs don't lead but this is a huge operational problem for us.
2. The aukaad of a Col in India is nothing. He is like a leper in the govt. But the aukad of his equiavlent SSP or IAS officer is great. And the aukaad of the Paki Lt Col we all know is great. So what happens - deep demoralization. He does not have the authority to help the troops when they go on leave and find their land stolen by local mafia (often in league with police), or some dispute with family on land etc. In the old days (my dads time CO would write a letter and it was enough for DC or SSP to help). Today (and its been the case for some time) they don't even do that because they know the DC and SSP will laught it away. This reduces the confidence that troops have. After all CO is the father of the batallion/regt and is supposed to solve all problems. But when he can do nothing his aura reduces. This erodes the basic ethos and the magic of the army. Army can fight with INSAS and old weapons but we cannot survive the loss of the ethos. And neither can the nation.
3. At Company Commander level the problem is worse. CO Coy is a young man's job and you can well imagine the problems it creates in an army here officers lead from the front. They have older families, almost all are married and when casualties happen there are more lives that get hurt. That's why subconsciously they tend to be more cautious and take lesser risks.
4. A corollary of that is they also refer everything up to CO. Command is eroded if its not exercised. Its like butter - either use it or it melts away. Command needs to be excercised not refered up all the time. This is creating big problems of initiative. And CO gets overburdened doing jobs a Major should be doing.
5. Troops also realise that officer has less authority and this hurts their morale too.

Its a big problem and I have been saying this for years.


Without alluding to status equivalence, it is safe to state that the age requirements for commanding a company or battalion are best met now, leaving out the actual war periods. Regarding Lt Cols commanding companies in Infantry or other arms they are few and far in between, since they make a Lt Col in 13 years service and Col in 15 years. The average service of a company commander could be put as 10 years corresponding to an age of 32 years which is very good. Similarly, the average service of a battalion commander is 16 years corresponding to an age of 38 years which is also very good, IMHO.


I am afraid you are wrong. Companies are indeed commanded by Lt Cols - in any battalion/regt atelast 50% of Coy Cdrs will be Lt Cols

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 18:43

CalvinH wrote:Comparison with IAS is not right. May be true for bits and pieces but the argument is not valid as whole. Plus the comparison of what is the Aukaad (t) is wrong at many levels.

Yes, the social mileage and prestige that Army officers used to enjoy is coming down. This is part and parcel of a growing economy where comparison metric is financial status, or ability to achieve a particular financial status.

The simplified answer to correct the imbalance is to bring down the hyper inflated powers of Babus. Plus finding ways to generate more respect and admiration about our armed forces in general population. This will compensate for lack of balance that our armed force personnel are feeling vis-a-vis their civilian counterparts. A simple act of people offering the armed forces guy to move up in the queue is an example of this respect.

Plus we need to find ways to provide a fitting post retirement career path for Armed forces officers.

PS: The ratio 1:20 is only correct if Secy level officer manages only IAS officers. Thats not the case. If you count the Gazetted level officers and above under a secretary the ratio will go up substantially. Also The secy level officers would be <100. Not all of them are IAS though majority of them will be from IAS.


You don't seem to have much knowledge of how our government is structured and how the country works on ground level. All government works on equivalence of status (by constitution). Class 1 officers across all cadres are equivalent to IAS. IDSE (Indian Defence Service of Engineers) ie MES is also equivalent to IAS, so is IRSE (Indian Railway Service of Engineers) , Indian Defence Service and even Indian Forest Service. And obviously IPS and IPS and Customs and Central Excise. Everything in government is based on rank equivalence and that leads to pay etc. Aukad is crucial in a country where nothing works. Why because if you want to get something done (say your house has been looted) whether you can get the state machinery to work depends on your aukad. Armed forces in India have less aukad than any all India service - they cannot get anything done. Armed forces have been asking for their own pay commission for decades and it was promised last pay commission but it did not come through. In fact there was an attempt by IAS to make armed forces class 2 officers instead of class 1 officers. It has recently been shot down.

Even the MES who are responsible for maintenance of cantonments , house construction etc and work with army officers in the same job and same role, have been given a higher status for doing exactly the same job. How is that fair.

I'll give you a shameful example from my own family. A relative is in the MES (civil employee) and lives in the same colony as army officers. He has a army officer who lives opposite him in the govt accommodation (which incidently is the best quality as MES constructed it for their own staff. Poof infantry officers coming after tenures in Siachen get worse accommodation). Anyway, he (the army officer neighbor) has been sent to Kashmir and his wife and young children are behind in the peace area. They have some boxes lying under the stairs and my relative wants these removed. They lady said 'my husband is in the valley, I don't have any manpower, how can I do it'. My relative threatened to have it thrown out. Sheer arrogance within the 'service' to own colleagues. A few years ago atleast an MES officer would never do it because they work with the army, their bosses are the army and their colleagues are the army. Now they are the bosses without spending a day in a tough posting and compare themselves to IAS/IPS.

When I told my relative he shouldn't have done this and he said 'I dont care, I am equivalent to a xxx rank IPS/IAS officer (he is a civil engineer and his job is build houses) and I don't have time for these xyz people'.

I suggest you go and take a census of all widows of of army officers who have died in the last decade and ask them how they are treated. Then do a census of serving officers's wives and ask them and lastly ask the children of army officers why they dont want to join the army.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 18:48

Calvin your math is also wrong. The ratio of 1:20 is number of secy level posts of IAS officers vs serving IAS officers ! How do other cadres come in ? You can do the same calculation for IPS, IFS etc, allied services etc separately.

I really wish Vidur would comment

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Deans » 29 Jan 2018 19:46

Akshay ji, The situation in the Army you describe is indeed very disturbing (A Lt Col commanding a company). I come from a Navy family and while I'm aware of the shenanigans of the bureaucrats, I didn't know things were so bad in the backbone of the army - an infantry battalion.

It seems to me that the services should try and resolve this situation by policies that don't need bureaucratic sanction. If there is a shortage of
junior officers, can the army promote JCO's or outstanding soldiers (e.g. Maj Gogoi) in far larger numbers ? Can a JCO independently command
a platoon ? I understand the Navy and Air force promote OR's in a higher proportion than the Amy.
The reality in the service is also that vacancies after Lt Col are like Effiel tower. Either a lot of officers leave the service with their pensions
after 20 years (that process should actually be encouraged) or there have to be efforts to assign them, at Col/ Brigadier level to central organisations that need them. For e.g. can an army Colonel be seconded to the BSF to command a brigade (in place of a IPS officer, who would rather be making money in an actual police job). The situation is grace enough to look at unconventional solutions.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 19:56

Deans, JCOs do command platoons ! There are hardly 7/8 officers posted in a infantry battalion (of which max 4-5 are on hand at any time - others are on courses and leave) against an authorized strength of 19. OTA Gaya has been set up to train jawans to be officers. But these are band aid options. In fact I think one issues with the armed forces is that they go for these band aid options without fighting enough for the real solutions. These band aids are worse than letting the wound open because then atleast people know how bad the problem is. There is an exodus from the infantry..guess to which arm ?

Navy and Air Force ethos is a little different. Air Force only officers fight and in Navy there is no contact fighting (except Marcos). In the army its close in and contact. You have to motivate someone to go in face of sometimes highly certain death. A very high level of leadership is needed.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 19:57

What branch of Navy is your dad from btw

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Deans » 29 Jan 2018 21:19

Akshay Kapoor wrote:What branch of Navy is your dad from btw


Electrical, He took part in the raid on Karachi in 71.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby sudeepj » 29 Jan 2018 23:09

Akshay Kapoor wrote:Navy and Air Force ethos is a little different. Air Force only officers fight and in Navy there is no contact fighting (except Marcos). In the army its close in and contact. You have to motivate someone to go in face of sometimes highly certain death. A very high level of leadership is needed.


Cant stress this enough. Its not just a job. Its not a heroic movie. Its a task of human butchery against animals who fight back ferociously to the best of their ability. We need to respect the warriors among us, they have taken on a terrible burden.

Apropos the 'grade equality' between the fauj and the IAS etc., that ship has sailed. It will not happen, unless the army is sorely needed for something. Its best to focus on ways and means to solve the practical problems that result such as protecting jawans from land mafia etc.

The reason it will not happen is, the IAS bureaucracy has an extremely public facing job. They are really in charge of making policy, implementing policy etc., taking financial decisions with very large implications that will make or break governments. One reason the ranks have inflated is that different political parties have their 'favorites' because we dont have a professional class that is also into politics.

So every govt. has its favorites in the IAS whose services they use when they come into power and they are sidelines into inconsequential posts when the other party comes to power. So you need twice or thrice as many officers.. and a fraction of them are idling at any given time. This is true even for other govt. departments. E.g. a PWD guy who can get things done can swing several thousand votes. If he is 'politically committed', he can also swing 'chanda' which in turn can make or break elections.

In contrast, fauji officers come into the 'make or break govt.' situation only in a couple of areas: Kashmir or a few states in the NE. These are too small in the over all scheme of things to matter. The nation has settled into a comfortable stance, where we lose a couple of hundred faujis in these states every year, we kill several hundred terrorists and Pakibans and call it even. There is no political or social need for aar-paar and hence fauj is not 'needed'.

This is my read of the situation, I am not sure if it can be fixed. In some ways, the blame lies on the fauj also. What is our capability to go out and kill sewer rats hiding in Pakistan? Diplomats are avadhya (can not be murdered/harmed), but Pakistan regularly attacks our embassy in Afghanistan. Why dont we pay the ******** back in the same coin? Public expects this from the fauj and when the fauj does not carry out their expectation they tend to think less of the fauj.

Our generals have (had???) bought into the nonsense proportional response doctrines which amount to this: If a miscreant pinches my wifes bottom, I go and pinch his. Will a wife (in this case, the public) respect a husband who does that? To some extent, even the soldiers are subject to this.. E.g. the way they are asked to take abuse and blows from Kashmiri scum and not react. Will a soldier respect an officer who asks him to not retaliate? I am not sure..

Any way, my pranams to the warriors among us, and may Ma Saraswati guide us through this maze.
Last edited by sudeepj on 29 Jan 2018 23:17, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby chetak » 29 Jan 2018 23:13

Deans wrote:
Akshay Kapoor wrote:What branch of Navy is your dad from btw


Electrical, He took part in the raid on Karachi in 71.


8)

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 29 Jan 2018 23:19

chetak wrote:
Deans wrote:
Electrical, He took part in the raid on Karachi in 71.


8)


Killers ! What an offensive action. That was sheer brilliance and sheer aggression. Many moons ago (too many) as a little kid I had the best fish fingers ever on a missile boat. I think it was Vidyut.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nachiket » 30 Jan 2018 01:06

AK saar, we have been hearing about the officer shortage for a couple of decades now if not more. Has the intake in the IMA been increased to deal with the officer shortage? If not, is it because successive governments have denied the army's requests to do it? This would be a good thing to leak to the right journo and try to force the government's hand. From what you say (7-8 officers per battalion instead of 19 sanctioned) the situation is beyond critical. I am shocked by the lack of recent reports in the media regarding this.

Also, why do you call officer training programs and promotion for JCO's as a band-aid solution? They already have the basic training and experience. I'd think there would be several good candidates who could be officer materiel given the right training.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Anoop » 30 Jan 2018 05:20

Akshay Kapoor wrote:Deans, JCOs do command platoons ! There are hardly 7/8 officers posted in a infantry battalion (of which max 4-5 are on hand at any time - others are on courses and leave) against an authorized strength of 19.


Sir,

While this is indeed a shocking situation, wouldn't this be a self correcting mechanism at some point? For example, if the number of officers is nearly 1/3rd the authorized strength, would it not result in a broadening of the pyramid above the rank of Col, simply because the base of the pyramid is narrower? So selection for Brig. level and higher would be proportionally higher for Inf. In fact, I recall reading some articles on this very aspect but the tone of the articles were that it was an unfair advantage being given to Inf compared to other arms. From what you say, it appears to be a mathematical issue.

There is an exodus from the infantry..guess to which arm ?


At what stage does this occur? For IMA graduates, isn't there posting driven by necessity as much as choice based on merit? For example, even if the graduate chooses an other arm like ASC, won't the fact that the Inf is much shorter staffed be used as a criteria for placement?

Thank you
Anoop

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 30 Jan 2018 15:53

Anoop there is a block system at IMA/OTA for precisely the reason that you don’t want everybody to opt for ASC and avoid infantry. So infantry does get its officers but that’s often not their first choice so the ratio of vacancies is very skewed in infantry. On the other hand for signals I am told I’m one course there were 5 optees per vacancy. If you get infantry chances are it’s not your first choice. Now in my dads time (early 60s) infantry was a cherished arm along with armoured and ENGRS. There was less demand for ASC or Ordnance.

Anyway the exodus doesn’t happen at IMA. As you rightly point out all vacancies in infantry are (forcibly) filled. But after a few years officers start opting for another arm which takes officers from other arms. What arm is this ?

Let me give you an example. In Dec I was in India at a party (civil party) and happened to meet a young major form the Signals. He and his young wife gravitated to me and we started chatting. The lady is the daughter of a Lt Gen of the infantry recently retired. Her brother is from his dad’s unit. Now the signals officer told me he really wanted to join infantry but his father in law and his father dissuaded him. so did his brother in law (who was commissioned in the infantry). In fact his brother in law has now opted for another arm. The signals major told me that all his family - father , father in law, brother in law told him ‘you will thank us in a few years’ ie for taking their advice and not joint infantry.

Nachiketji, some JCOs are indeed becoming officers but you cannot do that in the numbers needed. Also they are quite old when they become a JCO so that destroys the very purpose. This is not a solution.

The problem is not the capacity of the academies. The problem is prospects in the service. The right people are not coming forwards to join in enough numbers. The solution is to increase attractiveness of the profession not to lower standards. This means izzat, equivalence , parallel professional avenues (in civil services , PSUs), absorption into industry etc. I will give you an example - one of our very own BRFites is a highly professional hepter pilot and had to leave the service because of an injury. Now with many years in corporate life and an examplary IAF track record he is a great fit for a particular job in HAL. It’s a perfect fit. He is looking for a job. he tried many times with HAL and HAL refused to hire him.

Let’s leave this discussion for now because I’m not sure people are understanding the issues. And I cannot explain it any more clearly. My shortcoming. If Vidurji responds then we will have a useful perspective from the govt side.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby CalvinH » 31 Jan 2018 01:59

Akshay Kapoor wrote:
Even the MES who are responsible for maintenance of cantonments , house construction etc and work with army officers in the same job and same role, have been given a higher status for doing exactly the same job. How is that fair.

I'll give you a shameful example from my own family. A relative is in the MES (civil employee) and lives in the same colony as army officers. He has a army officer who lives opposite him in the govt accommodation (which incidently is the best quality as MES constructed it for their own staff. Poof infantry officers coming after tenures in Siachen get worse accommodation). Anyway, he (the army officer neighbor) has been sent to Kashmir and his wife and young children are behind in the peace area. They have some boxes lying under the stairs and my relative wants these removed. They lady said 'my husband is in the valley, I don't have any manpower, how can I do it'. My relative threatened to have it thrown out. Sheer arrogance within the 'service' to own colleagues. A few years ago atleast an MES officer would never do it because they work with the army, their bosses are the army and their colleagues are the army. Now they are the bosses without spending a day in a tough posting and compare themselves to IAS/IPS.

When I told my relative he shouldn't have done this and he said 'I dont care, I am equivalent to a xxx rank IPS/IAS officer (he is a civil engineer and his job is build houses) and I don't have time for these xyz people'.

I suggest you go and take a census of all widows of of army officers who have died in the last decade and ask them how they are treated. Then do a census of serving officers's wives and ask them and lastly ask the children of army officers why they dont want to join the army.


Sir I dont get this. How are MES guys given higher status. Who gave it to them? Has their own grade equivalency moved upwards vis-a-vis IAS and armed forces ranks.

From your point of view its about the real power in the society to influence things in one favor. I dont think that should be the comparison or aspirational yardstick for Armed forces or any other services in general.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nelson » 31 Jan 2018 10:35

CalvinH wrote:
Akshay Kapoor wrote:
Even the MES who are responsible for maintenance of cantonments , house construction etc and work with army officers in the same job and same role, have been given a higher status for doing exactly the same job. How is that fair.

I'll give you a shameful example from my own family. A relative is in the MES (civil employee) and lives in the same colony as army officers. He has a army officer who lives opposite him in the govt accommodation (which incidently is the best quality as MES constructed it for their own staff. Poof infantry officers coming after tenures in Siachen get worse accommodation). Anyway, he (the army officer neighbor) has been sent to Kashmir and his wife and young children are behind in the peace area. They have some boxes lying under the stairs and my relative wants these removed. They lady said 'my husband is in the valley, I don't have any manpower, how can I do it'. My relative threatened to have it thrown out. Sheer arrogance within the 'service' to own colleagues. A few years ago atleast an MES officer would never do it because they work with the army, their bosses are the army and their colleagues are the army. Now they are the bosses without spending a day in a tough posting and compare themselves to IAS/IPS.

When I told my relative he shouldn't have done this and he said 'I dont care, I am equivalent to a xxx rank IPS/IAS officer (he is a civil engineer and his job is build houses) and I don't have time for these xyz people'.

I suggest you go and take a census of all widows of of army officers who have died in the last decade and ask them how they are treated. Then do a census of serving officers's wives and ask them and lastly ask the children of army officers why they dont want to join the army.


Sir I dont get this. How are MES guys given higher status. Who gave it to them? Has their own grade equivalency moved upwards vis-a-vis IAS and armed forces ranks.

From your point of view its about the real power in the society to influence things in one favor. I dont think that should be the comparison or aspirational yardstick for Armed forces or any other services in general.


If I may hazard a guess, the MES officers issue is due to NFU or Non-functional Financial Upgradation, wherein all All India Service and Group A service officers get higher pay and perks of a grade, two years from the date the first IAS officer of the batch gets promoted to this grade. An IDSE (Group A service) officer in MES, draws pay and perks of a Major General when he reaches about twenty years of service while functionally being a Superintendent Engineer reporting to a Brigadier, raising equivalence issues.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Deans » 31 Jan 2018 11:23

I had some thoughts around the officer shortage and would appreciate comments:

Traditionally, the difference between officers and OR's (my opinion) was in educational standards and knowledge of English. This gap is narrowing.

In the US, the main route for enlisted men to become officers, is to attend college (for which they can leave and get very generous scholarships to attend college) and then pass a 14 week officer candidate school. There are more officers commissioned through this route, than those passing out of West point. I understand we have something similar, but can we not do it on a bigger scale, wherein a soldier who has a good record over 5 years, is sent to college - where a 3 year degree can be compressed and English skills focused on, while continuing to receive a salary to take care of any financial hit, so that he becomes a commissioned officer at 27 ? This would cost less than the cost of training a cadet at NDA/IMA.

The largest source of officers in the US is the ROTC program (roughly equivalent of our NCC senior division). Again, the ROTC produces slightly more officers per year than West point. In India, the NCC special entry scheme (for C certificate holders) has only 50 vacancies per course (though they are also allowed to appear directly for the SSB for NDA entry). Why can't this intake be tripled, with preference given to `sons of the regiment' who would display a natural affinity for the infantry regiment their fathers are serving in.

If it is not already the case, can short service commission officers (from OTA Madras) simply be barred from changing their branches away from the infantry ? A Short service commission officer could either be a technical specialist, a lady officer, or an infantryman.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nits » 01 Feb 2018 14:18

Union Budget 2018 Introduces Measures in Defence; Here Are 5 Highlights

*Finance Minister places on record the government’s appreciation of the service provided by the Armed Forces

*Our government’s focus has been on modernization of the armed forces, says FM Jaitley

*The government will set up two industrial defence industrial development corridors in 2018-19

*The government will bring out an industry-friendly defence production policy

*The FM did not give details of the budget allocations for the armed forces
:?: :?: :?: :?:

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Vidur » 01 Feb 2018 14:33

Akshay Kapoor I got your PM. Busy week. You raise important points and I don’t disagree. Will try to give some more comments on Sunday.

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Aditya_V » 01 Feb 2018 16:15

Nits- Jet li has given the Defence budget numbers, Revenue Exp 1.96 Lakh crore, Capital Bud 100K crore , Pensions outside this 1.09 Lakh crore. Without Pensions which is 2.96 Lakh it is supposed to 7.81% increase coming to 1.58% of GDP which is the lowest since 1962. But I think rather than the gross amount it is also important how much is spent on MIC.


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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 02 Feb 2018 00:23

This is how boys become men



When Subedar Major Taught NDA Cadets a Good Lesson About Nishan
By
Raghav Gakhar -
November 21, 2017
0
18305

NDA Cadets from the early to mid eighties will remember the imposing frame of SM Darbara Singh. During the rehearsal for the Passing out Parade in 1985, the cadets were in a particularly rebellious mood. The noise did not die down even when the Nishan (Presidential Colours awarded to NDA) was brought into the QM fort, and this was a serious matter indeed, for the Nishan is held in high esteem by the cadet community.

The insult to the Nishan did not go down well with Subedar Major Darbara Singh. With his measured steps he stepped up to the podium and with a voice heavy with anger and gruff with emotions, he asked the cadets to lend him their ears.
Mules carrying ammunition over a mountain pass during 1962 War.

Subedar Major Darbara Singh “Cadets, I have served in the Indian Army for 23 years. I have seen the 1962 operations, the 1965 and 1971 wars as a combatant. The Nishan that you have not acknowledged today, stands for me and countless others who have taken up the profession of arms and given their youth and lives for the honour of being given an opportunity to salute the Nishan, as the symbol of the supreme sacrifice made by our martyrs.

I will tell you a story that might indicate to you the feelings that we soldiers have for the Nishan. The SM drew a deep breath and continued, In this very academy we have a hut of remembrance,where the names of all the former alumni of this institution who have fallen in action are inscribed on the wall, I have been in this academy for the past three years and I have been able to enter that hut only once.

Because written on the wall is one name, Lt Palta of the 4th Battalion the Sikh regiment.

During the 1962 China War, my Paltan was posted in the Tawang sector. I was deployed right on the border, and my section commander was the same Lt Palta whose name is there on the wall in the hut of remembrance.

On the fateful day of 15 Nov 1962, the Chinese attacked our post and we were told to fight back to the last man, last bullet. Lt Palta was personally leading the fight back. It was a harrowing time, we were outnumbered, out gunned and desperately short of ammunition.

Yet we soldiered on , because Lt Palta did not know any other way.

Sometime during the night. Lt Palta was hit in the face by a mortar, the explosion severed his head from his body and the headless body was thrown on me. The enemy overran the post as soon as the officer was dead and I, 17 years old with 11 months of service, fighting a bloody skirmish with the enemy and out of ammunition, was hiding under the dead body of my section commander.

The blood from Lt Palta’s body soaked my beard and chest and the enemy, thinking that I was dead, did not bother to even take me as a POW. Through the night I lay there, in the tattered remains of my post, freezing in the Himalayan cold.

All my comrades dead, and the dead body of that heroic officer shielding me. It took me three days to wash off the blood from my face, but in my mind, the blood of Lt Palta is still there, warm and caking slowly.

I will carry this blood to my funeral pyre.” The SM’s voice became gruffer with verbalized emotion, “When I entered the hut of remembrance the first time, I saw Lt Palta’s name and picture on the wall.

In an instance I was transported back in time to 1962 and felt his cold stiff body on top of mine and his blood congealing on my face. Till date I haven’t been able to enter the hut again.

” Cadets, its for officers like these that the academy has been given the Nishan. It has been won by the blood of ex NDAofficers and it stands for all that is good and pure in these horrible times; I will not permit you to insult the Nishan and Lt Palta as long as I have breath.”

So saying the SM stepped off the dais and strode out of the QM fort in fragile silence. The silence of the QM fort was shattered only by the echoing word of of command of the parade commander some eight minutes later, ordering the passing out parade to coil its sinuous way out of the QM fort in to the drill square.

The Nishan is nothing but a piece of cloth for those who see it as such, but for Subedar Major Darbara Singh of the Ninth Battalion of the Sikh Regiment of the Indian Army, and countless others like him, it stood for Lt Palta and a cold winter night when a young Lieutenant died trying to protect and lead his men in to battle and to supreme honour.

It stood for a quintessential Indian army officer, who, even when dead, continued to shield a young frightened soldier who was out of ammunition and at the end of his wits.

A breed of officers who gave these grizzled old men the self-esteem and sense of honour, of belonging to a family, of mattering, of esprit-de-corps, and in the end, a way of life. And that, in my opinion is true leadership.

nam
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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby nam » 02 Feb 2018 15:35

Finally some desi TFTA optics from Tonbo filtering to our warriors.

https://twitter.com/abhaytrivedi99/status/959140674665877504

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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby ks_sachin » 02 Feb 2018 16:39

Akshay Kapoor wrote:This is how boys become men



When Subedar Major Taught NDA Cadets a Good Lesson About Nishan
By
Raghav Gakhar -
November 21, 2017
0
18305

NDA Cadets from the early to mid eighties will remember the imposing frame of SM Darbara Singh. During the rehearsal for the Passing out Parade in 1985, the cadets were in a particularly rebellious mood. The noise did not die down even when the Nishan (Presidential Colours awarded to NDA) was brought into the QM fort, and this was a serious matter indeed, for the Nishan is held in high esteem by the cadet community.

The insult to the Nishan did not go down well with Subedar Major Darbara Singh. With his measured steps he stepped up to the podium and with a voice heavy with anger and gruff with emotions, he asked the cadets to lend him their ears.
Mules carrying ammunition over a mountain pass during 1962 War.

Subedar Major Darbara Singh “Cadets, I have served in the Indian Army for 23 years. I have seen the 1962 operations, the 1965 and 1971 wars as a combatant. The Nishan that you have not acknowledged today, stands for me and countless others who have taken up the profession of arms and given their youth and lives for the honour of being given an opportunity to salute the Nishan, as the symbol of the supreme sacrifice made by our martyrs.

I will tell you a story that might indicate to you the feelings that we soldiers have for the Nishan. The SM drew a deep breath and continued, In this very academy we have a hut of remembrance,where the names of all the former alumni of this institution who have fallen in action are inscribed on the wall, I have been in this academy for the past three years and I have been able to enter that hut only once.

Because written on the wall is one name, Lt Palta of the 4th Battalion the Sikh regiment.

During the 1962 China War, my Paltan was posted in the Tawang sector. I was deployed right on the border, and my section commander was the same Lt Palta whose name is there on the wall in the hut of remembrance.

On the fateful day of 15 Nov 1962, the Chinese attacked our post and we were told to fight back to the last man, last bullet. Lt Palta was personally leading the fight back. It was a harrowing time, we were outnumbered, out gunned and desperately short of ammunition.

Yet we soldiered on , because Lt Palta did not know any other way.

Sometime during the night. Lt Palta was hit in the face by a mortar, the explosion severed his head from his body and the headless body was thrown on me. The enemy overran the post as soon as the officer was dead and I, 17 years old with 11 months of service, fighting a bloody skirmish with the enemy and out of ammunition, was hiding under the dead body of my section commander.

The blood from Lt Palta’s body soaked my beard and chest and the enemy, thinking that I was dead, did not bother to even take me as a POW. Through the night I lay there, in the tattered remains of my post, freezing in the Himalayan cold.

All my comrades dead, and the dead body of that heroic officer shielding me. It took me three days to wash off the blood from my face, but in my mind, the blood of Lt Palta is still there, warm and caking slowly.

I will carry this blood to my funeral pyre.” The SM’s voice became gruffer with verbalized emotion, “When I entered the hut of remembrance the first time, I saw Lt Palta’s name and picture on the wall.

In an instance I was transported back in time to 1962 and felt his cold stiff body on top of mine and his blood congealing on my face. Till date I haven’t been able to enter the hut again.

” Cadets, its for officers like these that the academy has been given the Nishan. It has been won by the blood of ex NDAofficers and it stands for all that is good and pure in these horrible times; I will not permit you to insult the Nishan and Lt Palta as long as I have breath.”

So saying the SM stepped off the dais and strode out of the QM fort in fragile silence. The silence of the QM fort was shattered only by the echoing word of of command of the parade commander some eight minutes later, ordering the passing out parade to coil its sinuous way out of the QM fort in to the drill square.

The Nishan is nothing but a piece of cloth for those who see it as such, but for Subedar Major Darbara Singh of the Ninth Battalion of the Sikh Regiment of the Indian Army, and countless others like him, it stood for Lt Palta and a cold winter night when a young Lieutenant died trying to protect and lead his men in to battle and to supreme honour.

It stood for a quintessential Indian army officer, who, even when dead, continued to shield a young frightened soldier who was out of ammunition and at the end of his wits.

A breed of officers who gave these grizzled old men the self-esteem and sense of honour, of belonging to a family, of mattering, of esprit-de-corps, and in the end, a way of life. And that, in my opinion is true leadership.


Power to you Sir for the article.. Many people don't get what Izzat means and what feelings it evokes.. And it is not just in battle the bond between a good leader extends way beyond. If the CO is the father figure then the CO's wife becomes a elder sister to the men's wives.
Only a long time later did I realise why retired OR's came to see us when we visited Palampur. That bond works both ways. Senior JCO's reminisved about dad when he was commissioned and he acknowledges how they important in his evolution as an officer.
Funnily enough in the early 80's there some retired SM's (Subedar Majors) who would talk to me about grand dads command tenure..

Sorry Sir OT but your post touched a chord because while being being a little one I was showered with so much love and affection by the men that it is hard to imagine such unconditional love and loyalty these days.

Akshay Kapoor
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Re: Indian Army News & Discussions - 11 June 2014

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 02 Feb 2018 16:53

Pleasure and thanks for explaning the personal side of the bond. Mrs Tarapore took care of all the ladies as Poona Horse left for the war.

Its important to understand what Nishan is - the sum total of all the blood that has been spilt (and the lives of families and loved ones destroyed) for the nishan or the standards. These are soaked in the blood of braves. When a young man sees that and understands it he realises he is now linked to it for ever and it is his responsibility to protect it with his blood (and the tears of his family) if need be. Thats what turns an irresponsible, wild boy into a man.

One of my attempts in the future is going to be to find the stories about our nishans from our ancient and medieval days and trace regt histories to that. It will be painful but its important.


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