Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rajatmisra » 04 Jan 2014 12:00

Thanks a lot. I needed to ask on numbering. We have 1-3 corps; it jumps to 9-16. Then 21 and 33. Is there any logic behind this?

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 04 Jan 2014 12:05

rajatmisra wrote:Thanks a lot. I needed to ask on numbering. We have 1-3 corps; it jumps to 9-16. Then 21 and 33. Is there any logic behind this?


Logic? That is a question people like me have been searching an answer for for quite some time but have been unsuccessful. Don't break your head over this. There are reasons at time but mostly depends on whims and fancies of men at helm of affair.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Shrinivasan » 04 Jan 2014 12:57

I heard the missing numbers were the Corps which went over to Pakistan during Partition... But I am not sure and would love to be educated...

Added: I was checking this, I think I am wrong, someone gave me a gas...
Last edited by Shrinivasan on 04 Jan 2014 13:08, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Shrinivasan » 04 Jan 2014 13:02

BTB, there is an interesting pattern which Orbat junkies have observed... It is as follows...

We Had three strike corps till XVII Corps got raised recently, they were I, II and XXI (21), they usually are paired with X (10), XI(11) and XII (12) respectively... See a pattern...

I with X ie, 01 with 10 - reverse digits
II with 11, just 2 standing lines as my daughter says... Also reverse digits
XXI with XII i.e. 21 with 12 - reverse digits...

Funny co-incidence...

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby nelson » 04 Jan 2014 13:05

Next what? A far-eastern command with III and IV corps under it and XVII and XXXIII coming under present eastern command? Four corps under a single Army Commander would be a transitory phase, IMO.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby VinodTK » 07 Jan 2014 06:08

New strike corps for China border a fiscal minefield
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Triumphal media commentary has lauded this as a caution to China after last year’s incident at Daulat Beg Oldi, when a Chinese patrol intruded into the northern tip of India in April/May and set up camp on the Indian-held Depsang Plain. India has already raised two new mountain divisions in the last five years, boosting the defence of Arunachal Pradesh by some 40,000 troops. Now, another 80,000 hope to deter Chinese adventurism.

Yet, a Business Standard analysis of defence spending suggests that the MSC will financially damage India’s military more than it could military damage China’s, by dealing a crippling blow to military modernisation. (MANAGING DEFENCE FINANCES)

Already half the defence budget goes to the army, which spends just 18 per cent of that allocation on new equipment (see chart). More than four rupees of five go on revenue expenditure — the cost of salaries, transportation, training, housing, etc — just to keep the army running. Of that, two-thirds goes on pay and allowances for 1.2 million soldiers. Adding 80,000 more will bloat the payroll unsustainably, with a further blow coming when the 7th Pay Commission raises salaries. That will drive down capital expenditure.

While the army, more than the navy and air force, is a manpower intensive force, its challenges on the mountainous northern border relate more to equipment shortages — like 155-millimetre ultra-light howitzers and towed guns, and air support — than to any dearth of manpower. The large numbers already deployed are also rendered ineffective by a poor road network that ties them down to one spot. Analysts note that this lack of roads will also prevent the strike corps from moving quickly, depriving it of the crucial element of surprise.

“The mountain strike corps will be yet another immobile, inadequately equipped formation,” predicts a top army planner.
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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 07 Jan 2014 09:20

nelson wrote:Next what? A far-eastern command with III and IV corps under it and XVII and XXXIII coming under present eastern command? Four corps under a single Army Commander would be a transitory phase, IMO.


Which might not be a bad idea - we can bifurcate the eastern command into two segments; one for area west of Assam (inclusive of Siliguri) corridor and another covering seven states in NE proper. The Command HQ for this 'far-eastern command' could ideally be Guwahati.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Brando » 07 Jan 2014 09:53



Makes sense. A MASSIVE standing army with no immediate and definite need is not sustainable for any nation. Even the Chinese are cutting back as the cost of manpower increases and their budget supported by a robust economy is many times the Indian defense budget.

The Indian Army and the other Indian defense forces need to think of doing the same and reduce overall manpower, especially at the lower NCO level and boost manpower at the officer levels to be ready to dominate the modern battlefield where technology and rapid maneuver has a greater role to play.

India needs a quick way to rapidly bring into action large numbers of reserve troops in case of military requirement while reducing costs by having a smaller "active" component. With the massive requirement for trained paramilitary forces like the CRPF, CISF etc, the Indian Army can take advantage of this requirement while shifting the manpower costs to Ministry of Home while at the same time retaining a large well trained reserve force than can be quickly mobilized and pressed into service.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Aditya_V » 07 Jan 2014 10:01

Brando, I do not agree, given our Neighbours, Borders a standing Army of 1.2 million is pretty less, China has 3 million men in army and apart from PLAAF and PLAN, so rightfully they must cut back, Pentagon has 1.6 million plus 900K reserves.

In terrain like Arunachal and since we have to fight an uphill battle, we will need to have enough Manpower to have the capability to quickly take the war to the enemy.

What we need is more local industries to supply our Miltary and rather than importing Javelins, M-4, carl gustaf and other miltary imports which give outsiders a veto in our capabilities.

Our Army to population is one of the lowest in the world.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby krishnan » 07 Jan 2014 10:07

http://www.rediff.com/news/slide-show/s ... 140107.htm

Ajai Shukla

The new mountain strike corps, created to deter Chinese adventurism and launch offensives, will financially damage India’s military.

The army, navy and air force, like careless credit-card users, have run up so many bills that the capital allocation now largely pays for earlier buys, leaving almost nothing for new procurement.

That’s why some feel that the mountain strike corps will be yet another immobile, inadequately equipped formation, Ajai Shukla reports

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Nikhil T » 07 Jan 2014 13:13

krishnan wrote:http://www.rediff.com/news/slide-show/slide-show-1-17-defence-news-corps-the-army-just-got-itself-a-white-elephant/20140107.htm

Ajai Shukla

The new mountain strike corps, created to deter Chinese adventurism and launch offensives, will financially damage India’s military.

The army, navy and air force, like careless credit-card users, have run up so many bills that the capital allocation now largely pays for earlier buys, leaving almost nothing for new procurement.

That’s why some feel that the mountain strike corps will be yet another immobile, inadequately equipped formation, Ajai Shukla reports


What Shukla is forgetting is that as we go forward some of the "Pre-committed" capital expenditures will fully pay off our past loans, thus freeing up some capital every year.

Another assumption is that it is going to cost Rs 64,000 crore to set up the MSC. No one knows who came up with that figure and what is included in it. Maybe that figure has front loaded the salaries for all of the XII Plan (2012-17). Even here at BRF, when that figure was first thrown in 2011, there was skepticism that all of that would be spent on Capital Expenditure i.e. weapons procurement.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 07 Jan 2014 13:53

It seems AS wanted to push a certain point and went about using the data points towards the same. I can't begin to describe the amount of nonsense in that article...

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby nachiket » 07 Jan 2014 14:08

rohitvats wrote:It seems AS wanted to push a certain point and went about using the data points towards the same. I can't begin to describe the amount of nonsense in that article...

Rohit, but if the helicopters, artillery and other assets that that the Army envisions for the new Corps do not get procured because of financial reasons or our infamous bureaucratic delays (hey it's happened to the rest of the Army, why should the new Corps be any different?), then what Shukla says will unfortunately all be true won't it?

This of course doesn't mean that raising the new corps is a mistake, but if the artillery, light helo and new IFV procurement sagas are anything to go by, there is a very very slim chance that the raising of this corps, aside from recruiting more men, is going to go as planned.
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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 07 Jan 2014 14:11

In fact, w/o realizing the same, AS show cases the bare minimum the GOI has been doing with respect to CAPEX part of the budget and the fact that it needs to be revised. Please read this article from IDSA which puts the Defense Budget in perspective:

http://idsa.in/idsacomments/IndiasDefen ... ran_040313

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby nachiket » 07 Jan 2014 14:23

^^Rohit, that article seems to prove what I was trying to say in my previous post. In our dire financial situation, Defence CAPEX seems to be the prime target for reduction for our FinMin, since the government can't change its own profligate spending habits. And since the rupee is sliding down, the mild increase in capex last term in "rupee" terms also won't really increase it by much in actual terms. In such a scenario, Shukla's predictionof the new corps ending up severely under-equipped is likely to come true, no?

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 07 Jan 2014 14:34

nachiket wrote:^^Rohit, that article seems to prove what I was trying to say in my previous post. In our dire financial situation, Defence CAPEX seems to be the prime target for reduction for our FinMin, since the government can't change its own profligate spending habits. And since the rupee is sliding down, the mild increase in capex last term in "rupee" terms also won't really increase it by much in actual terms. In such a scenario, Shukla's prediction of the new corps ending up severely under-equipped is likely to come true, no?


AS's point is a bit different - he says we should focus on other purchases and not on MSC as it is financially nonviable given the budget we have. What we need to remember is that other big ticket purchases like artillery or helicopters etc are stuck up due to bureaucratic delays and not lack of fund. Has Bhim induction been allowed, it would have been serving in IA in required numbers. Same goes for towed artillery. AS would then have nothing else to talk about.

Further, it my submission that India needs to raise its defense budget as a percentage of GDP to about 2% - there is a cost of doing business and India needs to absorb that. Especially when all the three Services are undergoing generational transformation and making up for equipment short-fall at the same time.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Karan M » 07 Jan 2014 15:01

All thanks to idiotic votebank politics.

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Till then, the Indian defence expenditure had hovered around 1.5 to 1.6 per cent of GDP. It is to this level that India’s defence expenditure will sink if the Finance Minister continues with his obsession about reducing the deficit and coalition governments are unable to rein in wasteful governmental expenditure and electorally-determined increase in subsidies.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Karan M » 07 Jan 2014 16:36

rohitvats wrote:AS's point is a bit different - he says we should focus on other purchases and not on MSC as it is financially nonviable given the budget we have. What we need to remember is that other big ticket purchases like artillery or helicopters etc are stuck up due to bureaucratic delays and not lack of fund.


That is if those bureaucratic delays are not deliberate to put off purchases because of lack of funds.
VK Singh IIRC made that very comment that after he utilized all the funds one year, the next year a critical bureaucratic position was not filled so that IA acquisition was stopped and he ties that back to GOI needing money for votebank politics.

Further, it my submission that India needs to raise its defense budget as a percentage of GDP to about 2% - there is a cost of doing business and India needs to absorb that. Especially when all the three Services are undergoing generational transformation and making up for equipment short-fall at the same time.


Problem is IIRC, while defence expenditure as % of budget is 13%, this is entirely because of amount wasted as part of subsidies/G family yojanas and what not.

http://www.idsa.in/idsacomments/IndiasD ... era_200312

If that money was not profligately wasted, then there would be more money available.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby vishvak » 07 Jan 2014 20:31

There should be more clarity also about other nations spending on defense as part of budget. There seems to be lack of such references for comprehensive understanding.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Karan M » 07 Jan 2014 21:05

Those are available as part of their respective national reports and also available via syndicated databases.

Even Wiki has a summary.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_co ... penditures

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 08 Jan 2014 01:20

I think we should raise our defence expenditure to 2.5 - 3%. As Rohit says its the cost doing business and we live in a tough neighborhood. As long as a large part of this is spent in India its just another dimension to fiscal stimulus. It can only do us good if we manage it properly. We need to change the narrative to defence spending being a growth opportunity for a Mil Ind complex rather than a cost.

Re the MSC we have no ability to launch an offensive against China so an offensive formation was essential. However I am surprised its so large and I think there is a very real chance of it being under equipped. In which case the troops will just be cannon fodder. But I agree with Rohit, Shukla is talking BS.

Its only my opinion but I would rather have a larger AF than a larger army. One reason is that with more formations and a bigger army career management issues and post retirement costs increase - at all levels. Remember our jawans retire at about 30ish and officers at 54 onwards (Cols). We have serious issues in absorbing jawans into the civil jobs at the prime of their life. For officers its only a little better. Officers from Engrs (to some extent) or EME or Signals manage to find something but Arty, Inf (esp inf) and Armd Corps officers find it hard. Then there is the issue of age profile of our COs etc etc. And most importantly a large army means you need a big support set up. Like hospitals, accommodation etc, post retirement support, pension cost etc etc. I haven't used a MH for a while but 4/5 years ago I was speaking to Comdt Command Hospital Pune (the best hospital in the Indian armed forces after RR) who later became DGAFMS (Army) and he told me how stretched they were because of pressure from ex servicemen in Pune. And I could see it. We have only one paraplegic rehabilitation centre in India and its grossly underfunded. Only one artificial limb centre. Woefully inadequate. I know, I have seen them first hand. During ops these institutions are critical to take care of men after the media glare shifts. If we want a larger army then we should to sort all this out.

And where will we get the offrs for a such a large formation? We have a severe shortage of YOs.

If you have a large AF then you have just 20-30 combatants per squadron. Add 10 squadrons and just 200-300 more pilots needed (plus other squadron staff of course). Yes capex is huge but in the long run I'd suspect it would work cheaper if you properly factor in human cost etc. But I haven't done a proper analysis. Its just a gut feel. Maybe I have put too much value on the cost of a life in the equation, so maybe I'm wrong. But I'd rather have a lot more firepower and the flexibility to use it than a lot more troops.

My dream is an army with 12 corps, tons of arty, NVG with every soldier, anti material rifles in abundance, Lt Col COs, atleast 15 officers in an INF battalion and a really good quality of officer. A 45-50 Squadron AF and a strong navy with a strong surface and sub fleet.

Right dream over and coffee smelled. So I'll shut up. Sorry guys long post and probably nonsense.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby anjan » 08 Jan 2014 03:02

Akshay Kapoor wrote:And most importantly a large army means you need a big support set up. Like hospitals, accommodation etc, post retirement support, pension cost etc etc. I haven't used a MH for a while but 4/5 years ago I was speaking to Comdt Command Hospital Pune (the best hospital in the Indian armed forces after RR) who later became DGAFMS (Army) and he told me how stretched they were because of pressure from ex servicemen in Pune.
Isn't the ECHS (now operational for almost a decade) supposed to control precisely this stress on medical resources. It seems to work pretty decently in some stations like Chennai. Then again being Command Hospital it's probably more in demand.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Austin » 08 Jan 2014 09:15

Karan M wrote:Those are available as part of their respective national reports and also available via syndicated databases.

Even Wiki has a summary.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_co ... penditures


According to SIPRI database we are spending 2.5 % of GDP on Defence which puts us in 8th largest defence spender and 3rd largest by PPP.

Considering we import a lot of defence equipment a significant portion of CAPEX is wasted in expensive buy and so is FOREX ....if we had indiginised 70 % and imported 30 % compared to the other way round that we are into now we could have got far more from what we spend.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby vaibhav.n » 08 Jan 2014 16:57

The Army has definitely with absurd constancy stayed behind the curve when it has come to modernization and reorganization, it has embraced the technological change and avoided the organisational one with the deftness of a trapeze artist to avoid intra-arm turf wars. The Modern day IA Infantry Battalion is not very different from when the Brits ran the subcontinent with their equivalents of Munim's, Masalachi's and Bhisti's.

We are probably the only ones who still use an antiquated 'Continental/British' Staff system, something the British themselves abandoned in the 80's in favour of the NATO one. Even considering we are an Infantry-Centric Army, when two decades back the world's armies have moved to a 3 Rifle Coy battalion organisation (to speed up the exploitation phase in battle and have a smaller frontage) we are still hanging on to the old British TOE of a 4 Rifle Coy Battalion(emphasizes large reserves being available besides helps in CI Ops). This itself results in an enlarged and lobsided Divisional Arty assets.

While both organisational types have their advantages and disadvantages and are subject to a bigger debate. Even the existing extra 4th Rifle Coy among all its 350 Infantry Battalions result in saving an extra 42,000 infantrymen. These would be enough to raise an extra 50 Infantry Battalions.

We cannot always throw manpower at a set of problems and hope them to go away. Especially in the current economic climate and concurrent costs which continue to rise.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 09 Jan 2014 02:22

^

I don't think the 3 coy vs 4 coy issue is pivotal.

In my view the frontage argument is more relevant at formation level. A unit level attack does not usually face this problem. Also unit is close knit and platoons/offrs can always be moved between coys. This may not hold for other arms. For example in a div Engr Regt, each Fd Coy is with a bde. Tank sqdns can be deployed independently in support of the infantry as needed. Inf bats fight as an entity so I don't see this a big issue. Also in mountain warfare a reserve company is useful as mountains just soak up troops.

Lastly if we create another 50 battalions we will need 50 more COs, Adjutants, Quartermasters, RMOs. Then we get 15 more brigades, 5 Divs and 1 or 2 Corps? Where will be get the arty, engrs, signals etc for all this? Worst of all that means more officers diverted from the units. Promising young Majs will want to become Bde Majors and DQs at Divs. Last thing we need is more units and formations. We need officers to spend max time with troops in the units. If we do move to a 3 coy regime lets just equip the units better not create more units.

Or did you mean that if you need more troops don't recruit but use 4th coy ? In that case I agree that's a better route. We should also think about whether we need South Western Command. Maybe IX Corps should have been moved as MSC. Western Command I, II and XI Corps and Southern Command XII, X and XXI Corps.

Our problem is lack of resources - equipment and logistics and officers - not organization of the army. If Div arty is lopsided then lets give more firepower to the units. Much more firepower! As you rightly say Vaibhav throwing manpower at the problem will not solve it.

The old ethos works. I think the army has become too big because we have not been able to address the difficult political issues like doctrine, our Pak strategy, place of the armed forces in the govt, steep pyramids, pay etc, so the path of least resistance has been taken.

Smaller army, much more firepower and the freedom to use it. That's what we need. And of course sorting the Pakis out who are tying us down in CI Ops with no cost to them. That's why we need more firepower - to blanket the LOC in a wall of firepower.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby member_23455 » 09 Jan 2014 08:29

Let's see how the MSC's TOE evolves. If its going to be without dedicated organic aviation assets that will be a major downer. Also, over time it will become clear how army wants to fight with the MSC against China. A first strike doctrine is very different from a riposte-oriented plan.

Also be interesting to watch how the IAF and IA tango once the new formations exercise.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 09 Jan 2014 10:00

When discussing the 3 versus 4 Rifle companies issue for an infantry regiment, we need to understand that at the end of the day it boils down to firepower. Western Armies no longer have pure infantry division - barring some exceptions like 10 Mountain Division of US Army. In US Army, there is no nomenclature of a mechanized infantry division - each division per force is mechanized.

IIRC, the organization of PA in 1965 was on the lines of 7 x infantry battalions per division as against 9 x infantry battalions in IA. This was done because the firepower was supposed to make up for the lack of numbers. I think each PA infantry division had a strong recce and support battalion which was quite heavily equipped in terms of firepower. Post 1965, PA reverted to 9 x infantry battalions per regiment as the tank to infantry ratio was not found to be suitable.

If we can provide higher firepower - we can think of reducing the number of rifle companies. The development of RAPID was a case of IA trying to increase augment the firepower of an infantry division. By adding 1 x Armored Bde (2 x Armored Regiments + 2 x Mechanized Infantry Regiments) for a division, we managed to increase the firepower of each division substantially. And while the number of rifle companies stayed same in these divisions, it does provide a template where such an exercise (of reducing rifle companies) can be attempted. Though, I have a feeling that overall number might not go down.

For example, seven infantry divisions across Pivot Corps in western sector are plain infantry divisions.

- removing one infantry bde of 3 x infantry regiments @900 men each will yield: 7 x 1 x 3 x 900 = 18,900
- reducing one infantry company (@120 men) in balance 6 infantry battalions of each division: 7 x 6 x 120 = 5,040
Total - 23,940

But you will add the following - 2 x armored regiments + 2 x mechanized infantry battalions.

- 7 x 2 armored regiments (@900 men each) = 12,600
- 7 x 2 mechanized infantry battalions (@900 men each) = 12,600
Total - 25,200.

Further, you need 860 new tanks @ 62 per regiment and 840 new IFV @ 60 battalion.

Net - While the overall number for infantry goes down, the manpower level does not. But firepower increases tremendously. At a steep cost.

So, one really needs to compare the CAPEX and OPEX for creating such divisions (both manpower and equipment including post retirement expenses) and compare the same with infantry dominated force.

I think it is lack of funds which does not permit us to create a more 'dhinchak' force. Otherwise, Sundarji's Army Plan 2000 would have covered all these aspects.

Added later: I think comparative analysis of firepower and manpower strength at section/platoon/company/battalion level between IA, PA and PLA is a good exercise.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby KiranM » 09 Jan 2014 13:11

Hi Rohit,
Please clarify few doubts.
rohitvats wrote:..removing one infantry bde of 3 x infantry regiments...

Should 'Infantry Regiment' be 'Infantry Battalion'?

- 7 x 2 armored regiments (@900 men each) = 12,600

As per this link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/OrBat/Misc/3-B.html, manpower for an Armored Regiment is ~600?
Link also says, Armored Rgmt has 45 tanks. So the 62 tanks per Armored Rgmt you quote include attrition reserves?

you need 860 new tanks @ 62 per regiment and 840 new IFV @ 60 battalion.

Refering this link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/OrBat/Misc/4-B.html, we can say that 600 personnel in a Mech inf Bn - 4 Rifle Coys, MMG Platoon, Mortar platoon and RL platoon; is to be transported by IFVs. This matches the 60 IFV per Mech Bn (@ 10 per IFV) you allude to.
But what about reserve IFVs?
Also BMP2 carries 3 crew + 7 passengers. So the crew for the BMPs come from within the strength of Rifle Coys? This means boots on ground for Mech Inf Bn is 30% less than a vanilla Inf Bn.
Of course I understand this decrease in boots on ground is more than offset by firepower + protection of IFVs.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 09 Jan 2014 15:41

KiranM wrote:Hi Rohit,
Please clarify few doubts.

rohitvats wrote:..removing one infantry bde of 3 x infantry regiments...

Should 'Infantry Regiment' be 'Infantry Battalion'?

- 7 x 2 armored regiments (@900 men each) = 12,600

As per this link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/OrBat/Misc/3-B.html, manpower for an Armored Regiment is ~600?
Link also says, Armored Rgmt has 45 tanks. So the 62 tanks per Armored Rgmt you quote include attrition reserves?

you need 860 new tanks @ 62 per regiment and 840 new IFV @ 60 battalion.

Refering this link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/OrBat/Misc/4-B.html, we can say that 600 personnel in a Mech inf Bn - 4 Rifle Coys, MMG Platoon, Mortar platoon and RL platoon; is to be transported by IFVs. This matches the 60 IFV per Mech Bn (@ 10 per IFV) you allude to.
But what about reserve IFVs?
Also BMP2 carries 3 crew + 7 passengers. So the crew for the BMPs come from within the strength of Rifle Coys? This means boots on ground for Mech Inf Bn is 30% less than a vanilla Inf Bn.
Of course I understand this decrease in boots on ground is more than offset by firepower + protection of IFVs.


1. You're right on the nomenclature - it should be infantry battalions
2. 62 tanks is 45+17 tanks; this is based on the data point about numbers (124) manufactured for 2 x Arjun Regiments. The reserve tanks are held in depots.
3. I don't know the exact number of manpower for Armored Regiment. I assumed a number. Your link may well be the right number.
4. Yes, 3+7 structure in a BMP-2 forms a section. IIRC, the BMP commander is the section commander but I don't know whether he dismounts or manages the show from BMP itself. BTW, the number of ICV per battalions is 52 and not 60 as I wrote earlier.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby vaibhav.n » 09 Jan 2014 16:40

Akshay,

I was using the above to extrapolate the fact that the IA will have to increasingly look internally to refit and reorganize while balancing out capital procurement at the same time. A large majority of the formations being raised now will be from new unit raisings under those circumstances, there are a plethora of solutions the IA can resort to.

The British Army has a proposal for example for the TA/Reserves to raise its 3rd Rifle Company in times of War in order to avoid further regimental badges going extinct.The IA still resorts to Base level MRO activities being carried out internally with the Army Base Workshops. This when the IAF also has a proposal to outsource all of their MRO operations.

If we look at the number crunching Rohit has done, the IA with internal reorg can provide for the partial mechanisation of most of its Vanilla Infantry Divisions. The only financial constraints being the much higher OPEX on mechanised formations and the extra 900 tanks. OFB already produces BMP variants at 200 units/Annum.

Rohit,

Very true, Firepower is the single most important denominator in modern combat. IIRC, the US Army remedied their Light Infantry Battalions by having an additional Weapons Platoon with 2 7.62mm FN-MAG/M240 Bravo sections and a M224 60 mm Mortar section at the Rifle Coy HQ's. The new mortars have a range of 3200 mts+, thus providing the Rifle Coy with an powerful offensive element organic to it especially for a Rifle Coy in Defence. While we are still stuck with the 51mm Mortar with an range of around 750mts.

If we have a look at the IA website, then the RFI archives mention everything from 60mm Mortars to 12.7mm HMG's which indicates it has given it much thought but they all fizzle along the way.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby vaibhav.n » 09 Jan 2014 16:55

we can say that 600 personnel in a Mech inf Bn - 4 Rifle Coys, MMG Platoon, Mortar platoon and RL platoon; is to be transported by IFVs. This matches the 60 IFV per Mech Bn (@ 10 per IFV) you allude to.
But what about reserve IFVs?
Also BMP2 carries 3 crew + 7 passengers. So the crew for the BMPs come from within the strength of Rifle Coys? This means boots on ground for Mech Inf Bn is 30% less than a vanilla Inf Bn.
Of course I understand this decrease in boots on ground is more than offset by firepower + protection of IFVs.


1. Mechanised infantry and Guards Battalions have 3 Rifle Companies not 4 and an authorized strength of around 1000.

2. There is no MMG, Anti-Tank or RL Platoon in the Mech Inf. They have a Pioneer Platoon with 1 Pioneer Section and 2 Assault Sections. A Mortar Platoon which has 6 BMP Mounted 81mm Mortars issued @ 2/Coy. Mortar Platoons also carry 1 84mm Carl Gustav and 1 7.62mm FN-MAG MMG mounted onto the BMP.

3. The Dismount stick for the Mech Inf is 8 man strong and the extra dude rides in the Platoon Commanders BMP.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 09 Jan 2014 22:34

^^^

Nice DS analysis Rohit :)

And absolutely. More firepower please. Also more firepower with the inf pls. This is especially important in mtns. If we have to make a very hard choice I'd go for more tube arty, mortars, anti material rifles, HMGs and better personal weapons rather than armour and ICVs. Who knows when armour and mech inf will come into play in a full blown war. I woudn't be surprised if our leaders say using armour is not good for brotherly relations !

Atleast if we have more firepower with the coys and platoons we can hurt the enemy when we come into contact with them everyday on the LOC. More pirefower in the picquets would help. Also help to boost morale. NVG essential too please.

Vaibhav, I have a few questions on our current Mech Inf. Can it play a role in Ladakh vs China? How are we vs Pak and Chi in Mech Inf? How vulnerable is our mech inf to hordes of civilian jihadis with anti tank missiles?

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Akshay Kapoor » 09 Jan 2014 22:51

2. 62 tanks is 45+17 tanks; this is based on the data point about numbers (124) manufactured for 2 x Arjun Regiments. The reserve tanks are held in depots.
3. I don't know the exact number of manpower for Armored Regiment. I assumed a number. Your link may well be the right number.
4. Yes, 3+7 structure in a BMP-2 forms a section. IIRC, the BMP commander is the section commander but I don't know whether he dismounts or manages the show from BMP itself. BTW, the number of ICV per battalions is 52 and not 60 as I wrote earlier.


45 tanks is the brick (I think thats what its called). 14 per squadron plus, CO, 21C and Adjt. The other 17 tanks are kept with the regt only not in depots AFAIK. They are used actively. If one tank breaks down another is used etc. Not attrition reserves.Very much part of the unit.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby rohitvats » 10 Jan 2014 15:28

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Army-kicks-off-raising-new-mountain-strike-corps-against-China/articleshow/28571907.cms

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday was briefed on the operational readiness along the line of actual control (LAC) with China, in the backdrop of the Army kicking off the raising of a new mountain strike corps to get "some offensive punch" against the much larger People's Liberation Army.

The classified briefing held in the military operations directorate, with defence minister AK Antony, Army chief General Bikram Singh and others in attendance, came exactly a week after the new XVII Mountain Strike Corps was raised at its temporary headquarters at Ranchi.

The new corps, to be headed by Lt General Raymond Joseph Noronha on promotion, will be raised over the next seven years with around 90,000 soldiers. The corps, to be eventually headquartered at Panagarh in West Bengal, will cost Rs 64,700 crore, out of which around Rs 39,000 crore has being earmarked for capital expenditure, said sources. more clarity on the expenditure involved in raising the MSC. INR 39K Crore should translate into USD 6.5 billion...which is a healthy number if only we can manage the bureaucratic delays.

While the Cabinet committee on security approved the new corps last July, the Army also wants the long-pending infrastructure and "capability development plan" along the "northern borders" with China to be speeded up. The price tag for this, in turn, is pegged at Rs 26,155 crore.

While the PM, in his last meeting with top military brass, said India must strive to develop "comprehensive national power" to tackle the challenges posed by the shift in the global strategic focus towards Asia-Pacific, he had also warned the defence budget might have to be trimmed due to the economic slowdown.

The Army, on its part, says the raising of two new infantry divisions (1,260 officers and 35,000 soldiers) at Lekhapani and Missamari (Assam) in 2009-2010 added muscle to the "dissuasive posture" against China. The XVII Corps, in turn, will ramp it up to the "deterrence" level. In other words, it will get some "rapid reaction force" capability to launch a counter-offensive into Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) in the event of any Chinese attack.

Apart from "integral units" and two Para-Special Forces battalions, the new corps will have two high-altitude infantry divisions (initially being raised at Panagarh and Pathankot), two independent infantry brigades and two armoured brigades spread across Ladakh, Uttarakhand and Sikkim.

The 1.13-million strong Army already has three "strike" corps — Mathura (I Corps), Ambala ( II Corps) and Bhopal (XXI Corps) — among its 13 such formations but they are largely geared towards the land borders with Pakistan.

India only belatedly realized the "greater challenge" posed by China, which has at least five fully-operational airbases, an extensive rail network and over 58,000-km of roads in TAR. This allows China to move over 30 divisions (each with over 15,000 soldiers) to the LAC, outnumbering Indian forces by at least 3:1 there, as earlier reported by TOI.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby vaibhav.n » 10 Jan 2014 16:37

Akshay Kapoor wrote:Vaibhav, I have a few questions on our current Mech Inf. Can it play a role in Ladakh vs China? How are we vs Pak and Chi in Mech Inf? How vulnerable is our mech inf to hordes of civilian jihadis with anti tank missiles?


I think Rohit can help you explain much better, he has studied the terrain and enemy in much more detail.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby KiranM » 10 Jan 2014 20:03

vaibhav.n wrote:
we can say that 600 personnel in a Mech inf Bn - 4 Rifle Coys, MMG Platoon, Mortar platoon and RL platoon; is to be transported by IFVs. This matches the 60 IFV per Mech Bn (@ 10 per IFV) you allude to.
But what about reserve IFVs?
Also BMP2 carries 3 crew + 7 passengers. So the crew for the BMPs come from within the strength of Rifle Coys? This means boots on ground for Mech Inf Bn is 30% less than a vanilla Inf Bn.
Of course I understand this decrease in boots on ground is more than offset by firepower + protection of IFVs.


1. Mechanised infantry and Guards Battalions have 3 Rifle Companies not 4 and an authorized strength of around 1000.

2. There is no MMG, Anti-Tank or RL Platoon in the Mech Inf. They have a Pioneer Platoon with 1 Pioneer Section and 2 Assault Sections. A Mortar Platoon which has 6 BMP Mounted 81mm Mortars issued @ 2/Coy. Mortar Platoons also carry 1 84mm Carl Gustav and 1 7.62mm FN-MAG MMG mounted onto the BMP.

3. The Dismount stick for the Mech Inf is 8 man strong and the extra dude rides in the Platoon Commanders BMP.


@52 ICV per Mech Inf Bn, assuming 6 BMPs of Mortar Pltn is part of of 52 ICVs per Bn. This leaves 46 ICVs. 1 ICV for Bn HQ and 3 ICVs for Coy HQ leaves 42 ICVs. 42/3 = 14 per Coy + 1 ICV for Coy HQ. Scratch that and say 12 per Coy leaving 6 ICVs as reserves. 12/3 at 4 ICVs per Pltn
4 ICVs per Pltn = 40 personnel with 1 ICV Pltn HQ. 3 * 7 + 3 from Pltn HQ ICV= 24 shooters. Pltn HQ ICV = 3 dismounts + 3 crew + 4 which will be the Pltn HQ actual strength (compared to 7 for vanilla Infantry)?

Does the math add up correctly? If yes 1000 - 460 = 540 personnel for Support and Admin? Teeth to Tail Ratio seems less.

If the Mortar Pltn ICVs are extra at 52 + 6 per Bn then math changes to below.

1 ICV for Bn HQ and 3 ICVs for Coy HQ leaves 48 ICVs. 48/3 = 16 per Coy + 1 ICV for Coy HQ. Scratch that and say 15 per Coy leaving 3 ICVs as reserves. 15/3 at 5 ICVs per Pltn.
5 ICVs per Pltn = 50 personnel with 1 ICV Pltn HQ. 4 * 7 + 4 from Pltn HQ ICV= 32 shooters. Pltn HQ ICV = 4 dismounts + 3 crew + 3 which will be the Pltn HQ actual strength (compared to 7 for vanilla Infantry)?

If this math is correct, then 1000 - 520 = 480 personnel for Support and Admin. Teeth to Tail ratio slightly better.

In both calculations where are the ~50% non ICV personnel being used up?

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Aditya G » 11 Jan 2014 18:20

rohitvats wrote:...India only belatedly realized the "greater challenge" posed by China, which has at least five fully-operational airbases, an extensive rail network and over 58,000-km of roads in TAR. This allows China to move over 30 divisions (each with over 15,000 soldiers) to the LAC, outnumbering Indian forces by at least 3:1 there, as earlier reported by TOI.


This footnote of our vulnerability against PLA repeated ad nauseum: is this actually based on factual research? I used to believe that we are actually in an advantageous position thanks to our troops located right at the border!

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby sanjaykumar » 11 Jan 2014 23:19

This footnote of our vulnerability against PLA repeated ad nauseum: is this actually based on factual research? I used to believe that we are actually in an advantageous position thanks to our troops located right at the border!


There is no possible defence of Tibet period. Geography and an independent, sullen population ensure that. But one has to justify those big defence purchases.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby Karan M » 12 Jan 2014 01:06

We missed this??

http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.asp ... 565222.xml

April 03, 2013

India has approved a plan to buy 30 billion rupees ($500 million) worth of night-vision equipment for its armed forces, a government official says.

At an April 2 meeting of the Defense Acquisition Council, the highest decision-making body in the country’s defense affairs, Indian Defense Minister A.K. Antony approved the procurement of around 5,000 third-generation thermal-imaging and night-vision devices for the country’s Russian-origin T-72 and T-90 battle tanks and its BMP Infantry Combat Vehicles (ICVs), a defense official says.

The defense ministry also cleared a proposal to upgrade the existing inventory of M-46 130mm artillery guns to 155mm guns through the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB). The OFB is modernizing its facilities under a 150 billion rupee plan.

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Re: Indian Army: News and Discussions 15 Apr 2012

Postby jamwal » 12 Jan 2014 10:50

Saw 3 ALH Dhruvs of Indian Army flying low and slow in formation practising for Republic Day parade.
Felt good.


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