Experts Speak

  • May 18, 2017
    Expediting Defence Procurements
    By Ranjit Kumar

    India's defence acquisition framework is considered to be one of the most cumbersome, time consuming, complex and fraught with uncertainties. In spite of the Indian armed forces evolving into the select group of top ranking arms importers of the world and future prospects of acquiring arms worth over US$ 150 billion in the next decade, the country is managing its defence acquisitions without a proper centralized defence procurement body and through a loose ad hoc structure.

  • May 15, 2017
    Strategic partnership policy - Needs speedy conclusion
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    When Defence Procurement Policy (DPP) 2016 was released by the then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar in Defexpo 2016, it was without few appendices, which were added later.

  • May 12, 2017
    GSAT-09 - Modi's gift to South Asia
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    GSAT-09 or SAS (South Asia Satellite) is the latest technological move by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for integrating South Asia, a resolve he had shown at the swearing in of his government by inviting all SAARC leaders, including Nawaz Sharif, Prime Minister of Pakistan.

  • May 12, 2017
    'Negative' defence budget - Goes more negative
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The relationship between economy and defence is that both are dependent on each other. Defence cannot be strong without good economy...

  • April 25, 2017
    PM Modi's Israel visit — Expectations?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Israel on July 5-6 this year, first by any Indian Prime Minster will be a historic event of extraordinary proportions since it also will mark 25 years of establishment of India-Israel full diplomatic relations in 1992, which allowed increased economic, cultural, and security cooperation between the two nations.

  • April 25, 2017
    Another joint doctrine — But who will implement?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Media is agog with headlines of "New defence doctrine to ensure Army, Navy, IAF can tackle entire spectrum of conflicts". This new doctrine is likely to be released shortly.

  • April 25, 2017
    Kamov helicopters — Finally through?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In March 2017, media reported that the Indo-Russian Kamov helicopter deal had hit a hurdle, pricing and technology transfer being main issues. The news said that India and Russia were having a disagreement over the joint production of Kamov-226T...

  • April 13, 2017
    Indo-Bangla relations at all time high – Teesta should be next step
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The four day visit of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina (April 7-10) has taken Indo-Bangladesh relations to an all time high.

  • April 13, 2017
    Cyber war – Where are we?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Cyber attacks in India have been on the rise over the years, particularly against government sites and Indian missions abroad despite several layers of security measures in place to protect against intrusions. In one instance, according to the Toronto based Munk Centre of International Studies, GhostNet – a Chinese network, had infiltrated networks of the Indian Government as well as of the Dalai Lama., Not that this is not happening world over, absolute cyber security being misnomer.

  • March 14, 2017
    Visit of Bangladesh PM - expectations
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Coming up next month in April is the all important visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh to India. Not only is she a close friend of India, the manner in which she has gone after the terrorists and terrorist infrastructure in her country...

  • March 14, 2017
    Pakistan — Defiant Frankenstein
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    By admitting that the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack was carried out by Pakistan based terror group but that the Pakistani government had no role in it, former Pakistan National Security Adviser Mahmud Ali Durrani has managed to hit headlines while keeping himself safe.

  • March 14, 2017
    Special Forces — efforts to bridge equipment voids
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Media is agog with news "Army on shopping spree, commandos to get deadlier", reporting that after the successful 'surgical strikes', MoD is fast-tracking some...

  • March 14, 2017
    Military Modernization Kaput — and the curse of committees
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence has slammed the Government on March 9 through its report tabled in Parliament on Demands for Grants for 2017-18, for its lack adhocism, casual and lackadaisical approach saying it would adversely...

  • March 14, 2017
    QCG and the six plus one
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG) comprising the US, China, Afghanistan and Pakistan aimed to bring the Taliban on board to join the reconciliation process in Afghanistan was perhaps to keep Afghanistan in humour.

  • March 14, 2017
    Of Grenade Lobbing Robots — and more
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As the battle for Mosul continues, the ISIS fights on with new technology. Tiny surveillance drones are employed to observe and report movement and positions of the attacking forces.

  • February 20, 2017
    Indigenous LCH — good strides
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India’s indigenous Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), was a star attraction at the Aero India 2017 held at Bengaluru last month.

  • February 20, 2017
    FGFA redesigned?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Happenings at the Aero India 2017 signified the next chapter in the Indo-Russian Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) saga. Whether it will now move faster than the snail’s pace is yet to be seen. Speaking to the media on the sidelines...

  • February 20, 2017
    India-China Strategic Dialogue — hollowness persists
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On February 22, India and China held their ‘upgraded’ strategic dialogue at Beijing. Just before the dialogue, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar held talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who was to co-chair the dialogue.

  • February 20, 2017
    Indo-US Defence Ties - retain the high
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    There was some speculation as to how the Indo-US defence relationship would pan out under the new US President, as relationships do undergo change with new administrations. Not that there was any reason for any apprehensions considering the indications from the US post election of President Trump.

  • February 20, 2017
    Policy on Unmanned Vehicles - setting course is good
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    DRDO Director General Dr S Christopher's statement on February 11, 2017...

  • February 20, 2017
    Tri-Service Commands - must get them right
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    After a lapse of over a year, news is media is again talking of Tri-Service Commands and other measures like appointing a single-point military adviser...

  • February 20, 2017
    Big Stride in Ballistic Missile Defence
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    February, 11, 2017 was a great day for the DRDO and the nation. At precisely 0745 hours, DRDO successfully test-fired a interceptor missile off Odisha coast and achieved a significant milestone for developing a two-layered Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) system; an incoming missile was successfully intercepted at a height of 100 kms with a direct hit by an interceptor missile.

  • February 2, 2017
    Defence Budget 2017-2018
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence has been allocated Rs 2,74,114 crore ($40.31 billion) for fiscal year 2017-2018. This does not include the pensions bill which itself is close to Rs 85,000 crore per annum.

  • January 9, 2017
    The China factor in Kashmir
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    That China is the central actor behind the problems in J&K is still not fully acknowledged by our policy makers. Not that it is a new development but the understanding remained coloured with the advice of our intelligence agencies who refused to get out of the time wrap.

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    January 9, 2017
    Why India should never join CPEC
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Khaled Ahmed, consulting editor, ‘Newsweek’ Pakistan, in his recent article titled ‘Corridor of Uncertainty’ writes that Pakistan’s General Riaz inviting India...

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    January 9, 2017
    SAAW – targeting enemy airfields
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On December 24, 2016 India successfully tested an indigenous Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW) from an Indian Air Force aircraft. The captive and release trials were tracked by radar and telemetry ground stations at the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur in Odisha during the entire duration of the flight.

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    India joins ICBM 5000+ league
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India successfully undertook the fourth and final test firing of the Agni-V today (December 26) from Wheeler Island, off the coast of Odisha. This is a wholly indigenously developed ICBM, which by itself is a gigantic achievement.

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    Heart of Asia Pak proxies named
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In his inaugural address at the Sixth Ministerial ‘Heart of Asia’ Conference at Amritsar, represented by some 30 countries and international and regional organizations and co-chaired by Finance Minister of India and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the following major points...

  • Visit of Israeli President cementing ties
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The eight-day visit to India in November by President Reuven Rivlin of Israel further cemented India-Israel bilateral relations. His visit was the first one by an Israeli President after 1996 when President Ezer Weizman had visited India.

  • Coming - Armed drones
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Pakistan tested its indigenous ‘Burraq’ UCAV last year and according to the Dawn quoting industry insiders, in 2015 China had offered to sell Pakistan its CH-3 UCAV, which can carry two laser-guided missiles or bombs.

  • PM Modi’s Japan visit - Historic nuclear deal signed
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Japan on November 11-12 may be termed the most historic as making an exception; Japan has signed a civil-nuclear cooperation deal with India.

  • ISRO: Of Satellites, Moon and Mars
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    It may be recalled that on June 22, 2016, India launched 20 satellites in one go, which was the maximum ever by ISRO. The world record for launching the maximum number of satellites in one shot is currently held by Russia, which launched 37 satellites on June 19, 2014.

  • Blacklisting Redefined
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Since December 2014, media was reporting that a new government policy legalizing middlemen in arms purchases, a source of massive controversies in the past would be in place soon.

  • OROP: One-Man Judicial Commission
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Politicization of the unfortunate suicide of Subedar Ram Kishan Grewal was indeed bad. The JCO's suicide note reportedly stated he was taking that drastic action not having been given the benefit of OROP.

  • Internet of Things (IoT) and Dangers in Cyberspace
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Much has been said in recent years about Internet of Things (IoT); it is coming, it has arrived or it is growing rapidly. But the enormity of IoT can be gauged from the one forecast that by 2030 there will be over 26 billion connected devices that would average to about six connected devices per each person on this planet.

  • Xi Jinping - China’s “Core Leader”
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    The Communist Party of China (CPC) has anointed President Xi Jinping as the “Core Leader” of China, which places him on par with Mao Tse Tung and Deng Xiaoping. Xi Jinping is expected to take China to the next level of becoming a ‘Great Power’.

  • Visit of Aung San Suu Kyi
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Myanmar Foreign Minister and State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi’s four-day visit to India after attending the BRICS summit at Goa provided fresh impetus to India-Myanmar relations.

  • Deriding military - Continues unabated
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    The latest attack on the military’s ethos came from the MoD through the GoI letter number A/24577/CAO/CP Cell dated October 18, described by a national daily in talking about rank “equivalence” between defence officers and “armed forces headquarters civil service officers”.

  • India-Russia relations take next step
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    The recent meet between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Putin of Russia on the sidelines of the BRICs summit at Goa and the deals signed between India and Russia have silenced the critics that the Modi Government is putting all its eggs in the basket of America.

  • Big ticket acquisitions - Overshadowing cutting edge again?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    As per media reports, the MoD is working towards seeking an annual hike of eight percent in terms of capital expenditure...

  • When will our military get its due?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    India’s Presidents have said that the military is the last bastion of India. The typical example of today is that while the J&K State Administration in the Valley responsible for the current messy situation went ineffective and the police abandoned their posts, the Army has been tasked to re-establish the rule of law.

  • The Rafale Deal Finally Inked
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    16 years after the IAF projected the demanded for new multi-role fighters and four years after the Rafale deal was mooted in 2012, India has finally signed the agreement with France for 36 Rafale...

  • Terrorist State Will Pakistan get the tag?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    September 20 was historical with US Congressman Ted Poe, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Terrorism, and Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, introduced ‘H.R.6069, the Pakistan State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act’ in the US Congress.

  • Indian Army Launches Surgical Strikes along the Line of Control
    By Lt General V.K. Kapoor (Retd)

    Since 1989 Pakistan has waged an unrelenting asymmetric war on India which we call “Proxy War”. We have been dealing with the terrorists sent by Jihadi Tanzims like the Lashkar-e-Toiba or Jaish-e-Mohammed who have their home and hearth in PoK.

  • Beyond the Surgical Strike
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey (Retd)

    The Indian Army has now been given a free hand to take appropriate action against the enemy operating across the LoC from PoK.

  • India Responds to Uri Terror Strike
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India executed surgical strikes against multiple terrorist launch pads-cum training camps in four sectors of PoK on night September 28-29. Post the Uri terrorist attack, Nawaz Sharif had shed the fake mask of friendship he had been showcasing in response...

  • Rafale Finally a Reality!
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey

    The Rafale combat jet packs a powerful punch that will be a potent force multiplier for the IAF and a deterrent for the Pakistan Air Force.

  • The Kashmir Imbroglio
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey

    In the last seven years, there have been as many as 20 major attacks of this nature in the State of J&K by terrorists groups sponsored by Pakistan.

  • Indo-Russian Strategic Partnership No reset required
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch

    Signing of the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) between India and the US has been a subject of intense debate in the media.