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Saturday, 25 October 2008

From Today's Papers - 25 Oct

Defending India: An ageing naval fleet, obsolete equipment

25 Oct 2008, 0308 hrs IST, Rajat Pandit,TNN

NEW DELHI: If you thought the Indian airspace was impregnable from aerial threats or the country had adequate number of submarines to take the fight to enemy shores, think again. The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has now punched big holes in these two critical defence areas.

Over the last three years, TOI has highlighted the gaping holes in the country’s air defence coverage — which is particularly alarming over central and peninsular India — as well as the fast dwindling strength of its underwater combat fleet, with projections showing Navy will be left with only eight to nine out of its present 16 diesel-electric submarines by 2012.

In its reports tabled in Parliament on Friday, CAG blasted the government for lapses on these very aspects after reviewing the functioning of ADGES (air defence ground environment system) in IAF and operational availability of submarines in Navy.

Take the submarines first. India, at present, has only 10 Russian Kilo-class, four German HDW and two virtually-obsolete Foxtrot submarines, none of them a nuclear-powered one. Compared to China’s 57 attack submarines, a dozen of them nuclear ones, this represents a stark asymmetry. It gets worse.

CAG holds the operational availability of Indian submarines is as low as 48% due to an aging fleet and prolonged refit schedules. This means if India goes to war at present, it will have to make do with only seven to eight submarines, even less than Pakistan’s dozen or so submarines, which include three spanking new French Agosta-90B vessels.

‘‘With serious slippages in the induction plan, Navy is left with an aging fleet with more than 50% of its submarines having completed 75% of their operational life. Some have already outlived their maximum service life,’’ said CAG. The ongoing Rs 18,798-crore project to construct six French Scorpene killer submarines at Mazagon Docks, under which one submarine will be delivered per year from 2012 onwards, was approved by the government rather late in the day.

The story of multi-layered ADGES, an integrated network of surveillance radars, air defence control centres, air and missile bases tasked with protection, is equally shocking. CAG holds the very ‘‘eyes’’ of the network, in the shape of air defence radars, are in bad shape, with obsolete equipment and outdated plans.

Both in terms of available numbers and operational efficiency, all the three types of radars — high-power, medium-power and low-level transportable — are inadequate to provide the nation with gap-free air defence cover.

Grim picture

The article, Services contempt of civil authority is not casual (Oct 22) has caused much consternation amongst the services. Arundhati Ghose has tried to see ghosts where there are none. The article itself is highly biased.

We have the ambition to be a world economic power, but the vision and will of a third world country when it comes to creating strategic capabilities. Given the geo-strategic environments of the region and India’s unwillingness to rise to meet the emerging challenges, the picture is getting fairly grim by the day. To complete that picture, one may add the factor of de-motivation of country’s armed forces.

Now that the fudging of the Cabinet decision by the Babus to advantage the IAS and the IFS has come to light (Outlook, Oct 13), would some one file a PIL against this forgery?

It also explains Ms Ghose joining the fracas. Had the Defence Minister told the Service Chiefs that the Cabinet decision was final, it would have left the chiefs two options to either resign in protest or accept half a century’s piled up degradations of their commands.

Lt-Gen HARWANT SINGH (retd), New York

Army admits 34 soldiers killed in ’84 anti-Sikh riots

SANJEEV CHOPRA

PATIALA

ADMITTING for the first time that soldiers were killed in the anti-Sikh riots in the aftermath of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s assassination in 1984, Army authorities have sought details of such victims and called for speedy compensation for the next of kin.

The Rehabilitation and Welfare Section of Ceremonial and Welfare Directorate, Adjutant General’s branch in the Army Headquarters in Delhi, sent a note to various Commands and Regiments that as many as 34 Army personnel (including one ex-serviceman) were killed in the anti-Sikh riots of 1984. And that all efforts be made to report on the progress of their compensation cases with respective state governments in tune with the package announced by the Centre in January 2006.

That Rs 700-crore package includes Rs 3.5 lakh as compensation for families of the dead, Rs 2 lakh as a rehabilitation grant to each family uprooted, Rs 2500 as monthly pension to widows and preference to children and relatives of the victims in recruitment to Government jobs. A quarterly feedback from all was sought starting June this year until the grant of com pensation is completed. An official spokesman for the Army, when contacted, told The Indian Express: “All possible measures are being taken to give adequate rehabilitation package as per the policy to the affected families of Army personnel killed during 1984 riots.” Said Pratap Singh Phoolka, a retired Army officer who has been leading the campaign and is identifying such cases on his own: “The untimely delay caused by the Army in this regard has caused immense damage. Parents of many such unmarried victims have also died in these 25 long years. Who will get the compensation now?” He, however, welcomed the Army recognising the killing of its personnel during transit in 1984. Phoolka claimed that only a few have been identified so far and that there could be around 300 soldiers who had lost their lives in the riots.

Phoolka started his campaign after two of his own men in 63 Cavalry died in transit, Capt I P S Bindra in Meerut and Sepoy Sukminderjit Singh Morena in Madhya Pradesh. The SGPC recently announced a Rs 1lakh grant to the families of the soldiers killed.

‘Shortage of special clothing forcing Army to issue old stock in Siachen’

MANU PUBBY

NEW DELHI,

T HE Army faces a glaring shortage of special clothing required for troops on the Siachen glacier and issues old and worn items to soldiers, affecting their morale and operational effectiveness, the latest report by the Comptroller and Auditor General says.

In a damning report that reveals that the Army is facing shortages of close to 70 per cent of the special clothing due to faulty procurement process of the Ordnance department, the report says an unauthorised practice of issuing partially worn stores to soldiers is being followed on the glacier.

Blaming the Army’s Master Gen eral of Ordnance for the shortages between 2002-07, the report says besides shortages, imports are being made by the Army without proper qualitative requirements. The audit reveals that shortages in crucial items, including sleeping bags, socks, jackets, gloves, boots and even snow goggles ranges from 44 to 70 per cent. The biggest deficiency the Army faces is in gloves and with barely 30 per cent of the required stock available on the glacier.

The Army’s contention that it is meeting the shortages by reissuing worn clothing to soldiers on the glacier has also come under severe fire by CAG that terms the use of second hand clothing as ‘unauthorised’. The report says the ‘unauthorised practice’ was resorted to due to the Army’s failure to make timely procurements for soldiers on the glacier. It observes that most of the special clothing used by soldiers on the glacier is recycled despite instructions by the MoD to issue new clothing to soldiers.

“Recycling of special clothing items is not desirable on grounds of hygiene, operational suitability and overall morale of the troops,” the report says, adding that 14 out of the 20 special clothing items issued to soldiers are reissued.

Raising the spectre of a scam in disposal of unrecyclable items, the report observes that the current system of disposal has many loop holes and items may be reaching the civil market for sale to the public.

Indian Navy's Submarine Fleet in Shambles: CAG

New Delhi
The Indian Navy has received flak from the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) which says in its report released Friday that the submarine fleet is ageing and by 2012, 63 percent of the vessels would have completed their operational life.

"In what could seriously impact on the operational preparedness of the Indian Navy, more than 50 percent of its submarines have completed 75 percent of their operational life and some have already outlived their maximum service life," the CAG report for 2006-07 said.

“With serious slippages in the induction plan, the navy is left with an ageing fleet with more than 50 percent of submarines having completed 75 percent of their operational life and some already outliving their maximum service life,” the CAG report for the year 2006-2007, released Friday, said.

The report said: “If the construction plan for new submarines is not expedited, 63 percent of the existing fleet would complete their prescribed life by 2012 when the first new submarine will be inducted as per the present schedule.”

Due to ageing fleet and prolonged refit schedules, the average operational availability of the submarines is as low as 48 percent.

The availability of the submarines with the Indian Navy is much below the envisaged force level and a large number of submarines in the existing fleet will become due for de-commissioning in the immediate future, which will lead to a sharp decline in the fleet, the report noted.

Ageing is not the only factor affecting the submarine fleet but the CAG has also found overexploitation of the submarines.

“Test check on 'Y' class of submarines indicated their overexploitation and non-adherence to the prescribed standards for operational patrol, tactical exercises and individual work ups,” the report said.

Timely refit and maintenance is essential for ensuring operational availability and readiness of a submarine but according to CAG's findings, the refit activity management in the navy is not efficient. Most of the refits could not be completed within the prescribed time period.

“Piecemeal modernization and upgradation of submarines at an aggregate cost of Rs.1,560 crore (Rs.15.60 billion) was undertaken by the navy without taking approval of the competent financial authority,” the report said.

The modernization and upgradation programme of submarines has been only partially successful as missile firing capabilities of three submarines is functioning at sub-optimal levels, the report said.

Pak to slash defence budget substantially for IMF help

Press Trust of India / Islamabad October 24, 2008, 12:56 IST

Cash-strapped Pakistan will have to slash its defence budget by a substantial 30% over next four years if it agrees to the IMF’s conditions for a bailout package now being discussed.

Facing severe debt-repayment problems and massive imbalance in its foreign exchange reserves, Islamabad hopes to get $9.6 bn from the IMF over the next three years at a mark-up rate of 16.7% a year, a media report here said.

But it pictured "extremely tough conditions", Pakistan would have to meet to get this financial bailout, The News daily reported quoting a document containing IMF's conditions.

The document states that if Pakistan accepts the IMF funding, it will have to gradually slash the defence budget by 30% between 2009 and 2013 and reduce the number of jobs entailing pension in government and semi-government departments, from 3,50,000 to 1,20,000.

The document further states that six IMF and two World Bank directors will monitor the preparation of the federal budget by the finance ministry and could change proposals which Pakistan government will be obliged to comply with.

Shaukat Tarin, adviser to the Prime Minister on finance, has said that Pakistan will approach the IMF for aid to overcome its financial crisis by mid-November, if it is unable to secure assistance from multilateral donors like the World Bank and friendly countries.

Pakistan will also have to furnish to the IMF details of all loans it has availed of under bilateral and multilateral arrangements 48 hrs before signing the agreement for the funding, which will not be rescheduled, the document said.

Pak kills 14 Taliban in Army operations

Press Trust of India

Friday, October 24, 2008 (Islamabad)

At least 14 Taliban militants were killed and eight more injured on Friday in operations by Pakistani security forces in the troubled northwestern Bajaur tribal region.

Security officials said troops targeted militant positions in Loisam, Charmang and Mamond sub-districts, all considered Taliban strongholds, with artillery and mortars.

Fourteen militants were killed and eight others injured in the shelling, the officials said. Several bunkers and hideouts of the militants were destroyed in the offensive.

A security official said troops had taken control of a strategic area near Loisam that has roads leading to most parts of Bajaur Agency. This would make it possible to block infiltration from other areas into Bajaur and to check the movement of militants, he said.

The jirga and lashkar or militia of Mamond tribesmen extended support to the government and security forces in flushing out extremists and Taliban fighters from their area.

The militia burnt down several militant bases.

People have begun migrating from Mamond sub-district to other places in the wake of the operations in the area.

Pakistani troops had killed at least 35 militants in ground and air strikes in Bajaur Agency on Thursday. The Pakistan army has claimed it has killed over 1,000 militants since it launched an operation in the region in late August.

Tribesmen say the casualty figures are exaggerated and include many civilians killed in the operations. Nearly 200,000 people have been displaced by the fighting in Bajaur and many of them are now living in refugee camps in the North West Frontier Province.

Troops move on Tiger stronghold

Matt Wade, South Asia Correspondent

October 25, 2008

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DEEPA LAXMI'S homeland has been at war for most of her 24 years. A few months ago her family, who are Sri Lankan Tamils, decided it was time to leave.

As heavy fighting raged between government troops and Tamil Tiger rebels in northern Sri Lanka, they fled by boat to India.

Deepa ended up in a refugee camp in Tirunelveli, in the country's south, but disaster struck soon after she arrived. Her mother and her brother died, leaving her alone.

"Camp life is terrible, especially when you have no family here," she says.

Deepa is desperate to rejoin the rest of her family in Sri Lanka but she cannot afford a new passport, or the cost of travelling across the narrow Palk Strait.

There are more than 100,000 Sri Lankan Tamils living in India, 73,000 in refugee camps. At least 200,000 more have recently been "internally displaced" by fighting and live in makeshift camps in northern Sri Lanka.

In January the Sri Lankan Government abandoned a defunct ceasefire with the Liberation Tamil Tigers of Eelam and launched an offensive to reclaim rebel territory. Initial progress was slow but in recent weeks the army has claimed significant advances. The military says it has killed about 7500 Tigers this year and recently declared the war had entered a "decisive" phase. It says about 1100 of its soldiers died in the year to September.

Last week there were reports that Sri Lankan troops were close to the LTTE's political headquarters in Kilinochchi. Capturing this town would be an important symbolic victory for the President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, who has vowed to crush the LTTE's 25-year campaign to create a separate homeland for the island's Tamil minority. The Sri Lankan army has doubled in size in the past five years and the Government will spend a record amount on defence next year.

However, experts in both Sri Lanka and India are sceptical about claims the war is nearing an end. The defence analyst Iqbal Athas, in Colombo, says the stiff resistance of the LTTE fighters shows the rebels still have formidable military capability.

"A great hype has been built up that the LTTE has one foot in the grave, but it could be misleading," he says.

"Sure, it will be a significant achievement if the army manages to take Kilinochchi but it will certainly not be the end of the war. The LTTE will just go underground and come back again."

Retired Colonel R. Hariharan, a strategic analyst who served as head of intelligence for the Indian peace-keeping force in Sri Lanka between 1987 and 1990, does not think the army will be able to "finish off" the rebels.

Colonel Hariharan says they may pull back into the north-eastern jungles, "shed the conventional uniform and go back to the guerilla mode".

"That would mean further suffering and agony for everyone with more suicide bombings, blasts and mayhem everywhere."

The Tigers' charismatic leader, Velupillai Prabhakaran, can probably be expected to spring some military surprises, especially when he is faced with retreat, Colonel Hariaharan says.

Meanwhile, a humanitarian emergency caused by the fighting in the north threatens to deteriorate into a humanitarian disaster.

United Nations workers were forced to leave Kilinochchi in mid-September and the UN is now trucking more than 750 tonnes of food each week into the north for distribution to an estimated 230,000 displaced people.

A UN spokesman in Colombo, Gordon Weiss, says it is preparing to deliver relief supplies well into next year. "Tens of thousands of people in northern Sri Lanka are living rough," he says. "We imagine the condition of those people will erode over time."

The refugees reaching India are in bad shape compared with past arrivals, says Joan Anojan from Organisation for Elam Refugee Rehabilitation, and aid group.

"They are much thinner and come with absolutely nothing these days; some have not eaten for weeks," he says.

Refugees are not India's only problem. The war's escalation has also sent shockwaves through the country's politics.

At least 14 national MPs belonging to parties in the southern state of Tamil Nadu have threatened to resign from Parliament unless the Congress-led coalition government intervenes to broker a ceasefire by the end of the month. They are reacting to sympathy for Sri Lankan Tamils among the state's 65 million ethnic Tamils.

If the MPs go ahead with their threat, the coalition will lose its parliamentary majority.

In response to this pressure, the Indian Foreign Minister, Pranab Mukherjee, tabled a statement in Parliament on Wednesday expressing "serious concern" about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Sri Lanka and demanding that the Sri Lankan Government negotiates a political settlement to the war that respects the rights of Tamils. He is expected to visit Colombo to convey this message personally.

The Indian Government will be hoping his protests are enough to quell the MPs' revolt.

with Seema Sanghi in Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu

This story was found at: http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2008/10/24/1224351544133.html

INSIGHT: Military and or military as public good? —Ejaz Haider

Military is a public good. If that were not the case, we wouldn’t require it. The need to reform the military in and of itself shows that we consider it a public good and therefore it must be answerable to the public. Else we would be talking about getting rid of the military

In her op-ed in the Friday issue of Dawn (“Defence as a public good”), Dr Ayesha Siddiqa has raised the interesting issue of when “defence” ceases to be public good. However, since she has meandered to the question, let me follow her trajectory.

The prompt for her article was a recent two-day conference in Lahore on the problematic of civil-military relations.

Yes, there were PMLN parliamentarians present at the conference while the PPP was absent. But given what the PMLN had to offer in terms of ideas, perhaps it was better that the PPP did not add to the aggregate of unlettered ignorance politicians tend to bring to such problems.

Let this comment be Exhibit A for my long-held view that the civilians, despite a clear and present danger from a praetorian military, have singularly failed to develop any sophistication in approaching the issue.

The audience’s enthusiasm notwithstanding, it was by and large nothing much to write home about since people were more interested in appreciating a quip or clever remark that put down the army than understanding the nuances of the problematic. Lahore is always a great place to be in on a day one doesn’t want to be an intellectual.

I would beg to differ with Ayesha, a friend of many years and a fine scholar of the military, that such a debate has been taboo so far. Both she and I have been part of many such debates inside and outside Pakistan, including in India, where we have been highly critical of the army. There has never been any knock on my door.

My own experience of speaking at the National Defence University, Command and Staff College, Quetta, and at the Strategic Plans Division has been refreshing. I have very often been brazenly critical and provocative and the officers, students as well as Directing Staff, have responded to my observations and arguments in good spirit.

Which is why, and I completely agree with Ayesha, the conduct of the said lieutenant general and some other officers at the conference left much to be desired. They showed themselves utterly incapable of appreciating the academic spirit in which the discussion was being carried out and did not cover themselves in glory; neither did they do any good for the army as an institution.

And this is just the point, with the term “institution” having been thrown in, at which I must move to the substantive part of Ayesha’s article.

She writes: “One of the latest arguments in defence of the army is, why blame the entire institution for the fault of a few at the top?” She considers this argument flawed on two counts: “the military is a disciplined force and orders flow from the top and everyone in the hierarchy is meant to carry out every decision taken at the top”; two, “all personnel own the decision of the superior management”.

She goes on to argue: “Those who differ with the policy to usurp power either speak out, for which they are phased out... or [they] resign. Those who remain...are partners in the decision as they share the benefits of being in the organisation.”

I agree with her that the military is a cohesive organisation and the Pakistani military, despite the coups and the pressures they bring to bear on the organisation, has largely retained its integrity.

But Ayesha has also advanced another argument, both in her book and in the closing moments of her presentation at the conference — i.e., there are linkages between the top brass and the political elites, such that the top brass, even when officers rise from the low and middle income groups, gets plugged into the ruling elites. In her book, Military Inc., she argued that the fault-line is now no more between the civil and military enclaves but between the ruling elites (of which the military is a predominant part) and the rest.

If her argument about the power relationships is accepted, then the formalism of organisational discipline which binds the military at the low and high ends of the spectrum, from the ORs, NCOs and JCOs to subalterns, field officers and general staff officers, must get diluted, if not in a legalistic sense then at least for the purposes of discussion under her own model.

I will eschew her reference to the Nuremberg Trials on the issue of responsibility because that is highly problematic both for legal and political reasons. But that can be debated separately.

In fact, like the divide between the elites (of which the military top brass is a part, according to Ayesha) and the rest, we would then also need to assume that there is groundwork here for a divide within the military between the general officers and the rest. Of course, we do not know, at least I don’t, where the dividing line exists or can be drawn. But if Ayesha’s model is right then there must be a dividing line somewhere and that should worry the army.

(In fact, Ayesha’s argument is very interesting and could actually solve the puzzle about why civilian political actors have remained so apathetic in the face of interventions from the military instead of trying to offset that possibility. But that is a different debate.)

On the other hand, such cleavage within the army, if it exists, could be exploited by the civil society to push for constitutionalism. This is the argument Nader Sohrabi put forward in his 1995 article “Historicising Revolutions: Constitutional Revolutions in the Ottoman Empire, Iran and Russia, 1905-1908” (The American Journal of Sociology; Vol 100, No 6).

Sohrabi’s argument, in addition to differentiating between socialist/communist and what he termed “constitutional” revolutions was that the latter succeeded in the case of Turkey and Iran and failed in the case of Russia. His contention is that while in the cases of Turkey and Iran opposition actors found support within a divided army, the Russian Duma failed to make any headway against the Tsar because the Russian army remained largely integrated despite having been defeated by Japan.

The question is: Is there such a cleavage within the military? And if there is, does a situation obtain that would legitimise civil society’s efforts to exploit it in its push towards constitutionalism? Or do we still have spaces for a less confrontational approach towards that objective? I ask these questions in the same spirit in which Ayesha has invited a debate on the problematic of civil-military relations and its various manifestations.

Finally, and this syncs with my question, is Ayesha right in arguing that “defence” is a public good only “so long as it is beneficial to the general public? When its benefits are restricted to a few hundred or thousand people, then it ceases to be a public good...”

I do not think this is a rigorous treatment of the issue. I also think that by “defence” she means the military. The need for “defence/military” is both a necessity and a concept, just as law and order or sovereignty etc. While one may have a problem with praxis, one cannot reject a concept which underwrites the very existence of a state (and by state I mean the operationalisation of the unwritten social contract between state and society and I am not problematising it because that would take us on a tangent).

One can fault the police for being corrupt or the criminal justice system for being flawed and in need of reform. But justice is a public good, as are the police and the courts. States may be bad, indeed many are very bad, but that doesn’t make us anarchists. We still use the state as a unit of analysis and consider it vital to any social contract or its actualisation.

It is not an issue of military and public good but military as public good. If that were not the case, we wouldn’t require it. The need to reform the military in and of itself shows that we consider it a public good and therefore it must be answerable to the public. Else we would be talking about getting rid of the military.

Finally, I agree with Ayesha that “At this juncture, it is vital for the nation to engage in [a] debate on defence and to ensure that it [military] serves the public good, if it doesn’t do so already”.

Ejaz Haider is Consulting Editor of The Friday Times and Op-Ed Editor of Daily Times. He can be reached at sapper@dailytimes.com.pk

Friday, October 24, 2008

From LiveFist (Shiv Aroor's Blog)

Special Instructions on 6thPC issued to forces, Rank Pay speedbump

http://livefist.blogspot.com/2008/10/special-instructions-on-6thpc-issued-to.html
Special instructions have been issued by the MoD to all three services notifying the 6th Pay Commission. The Army instruction (see snapshot) was issued on October 11, the Navy and IAF instructions a few days later. These instructions initially caused a bit if a furore because they incorporate the recommendations that the three service Chiefs were up in arms against. In reality, it had been agreed at the time the three-member Group of Ministers was set up last month, that the instructions notifying the 6th Pay Commission as-is would be issued so as to remove the perception that the chiefs had been "defiant". It was agreed that the GoM's recommendations (which are to be announced a day or two before Diwali) would be incorporated either as a corrigendum to the special instructions already issued, an amendment to the instruction, or fresh special instructions that will supersede the ones issued this month.

The only snag, and one that has already seriously irked everyone in uniform all over again is the fact that the Ministry has attempted to define Rank Pay once again, and in that effort, effectively classified it as exclusive from Basic Pay (which, as per, previous definitions, is very much a part of Basic Pay). This has seriously aroused suspicions of more shocks for defence officers just lurking around the corner.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi personally asked the GoM to ensure the issue is resolved amicably before Diwali. But by all accounts only two of the four core demands (Lt Cols in PB-4 and reinstatement of pensionary benefits for PBORs) are by most accounts likely to me acceded to for now. So has a compromise of some sort been struck between the GoM and the three chiefs? Has the GoM decided to recommend just these two, since they're perceivably more emotive than the other two. That's unclear so far. But there's talk that the three Chiefs are pretty much unwilling to accept anything other than all four core demands met. What then? Will they quit? Will they quietly accept, after what has surely been a gruelling and tense time for their leadership? The way things have gone so far, it's hard to say at this point.

In the meanwhile, the ex-servicemen (ESM) community shot off a letter today to President Pratibha Patil appealing to her to intervene and get one-rank-one-pension and other veteran demands implemented through the Prime Minister immediately. From what I've heard, the demands of ex-servicemen are unlikely to be met at this time. Hopefully I'm wrong. Watch this space.
Posted by Shiv Aroor at 9:46 PM
Categories: Controversy, Government, LF Exclusive, Military Pay, MoD
16 comments:

Anonymous said...

EVERYTHING HAS BEEN DONE TO BREAK THE MORALE AND DEDICATION OF OUR DEFENCE FORCESS ...LOOKS LIKE...OUR BUROCRATS AND POLITICIANS HAS BEEN PAID ENOURMOUSLY TO GET THIS RESULT TO MAKE OTHER POWERFUL COUNTRIES HAPPY..THE OBJECTIVE IS VERY CLEAR ..DO NOT LET INDIA TO BE COME A SUPER POWER AT ANY COST !!!
THANKS
10:39 PM
Indian said...

Shiv,

Please arrange a face to face debate while including ministers , all three service chiefs,major defence think tanks like K SUBRAMANIYAN and Journalits also ex service men of the three forcess.

Indian people need an answer as why our personnel of defence forcess need to beg infront of corrupt and greedy politicians and burocrats for their genuin causes ? WHY ?
Regards,
10:49 PM
Anonymous said...

@ all, pse read this

http://persmin.nic.in/dopt/4.1.html

so much for the NSFG grade being superior
11:02 PM
Anonymous said...

I believe that if all the demands are not met the right action for the forces will be to fight for their honour- which will mean a coup. And I believe why not? It is high time to root out corrpution at all levels in the country which democratic governments ahave failed to achieve so far.
12:05 AM
Anonymous said...

Dear sir this is addressed to all and th GoM,

GoI has a system of maintaining a parity in the "Class A Services" of the the central Govt. Merely by putting a brigadiers Stars by a Security Guard, one can not claim the status of a Brigadier or a Colonel. The status and parity must be granted as per "rule of law" and not as expediency.

Unfortunately IAS and IPS are behaving worse than the Security Guards putting on generals ranks in their sustained efforts to take over "the Political Space". They have let their uncalled for animosity and inimical attitude against all the Class A services take over their "elitist" roles and they have pounced over the easiest and innocent target called "the Armed Forces of Indian Union". Otherwise how dare a young IAS or IPS think he is better than a combat soldier, combat flier or a submariner in deciding on his professional norms, leave aside a General. The state paid commandos protecting them to "protect democracy" and defeat enemy designs does not mean they are so much better then them that they declare their protectors as slaves.

While most of IAS/ IPS officers children, as per admitted official figures are affluent new elites in the shape of "NRI" in USA and Europe, their IAS / IPS fathers are busy destroying the fundamentals of the Country.

Now, look at this tamasha. CPOs who are not even Class A Central Services and is actually meant for parking slots and promotional avenue of IPS, is staking claims against the largest and most organized class A, all India Services called Armed Forces of Indian Union.

As per DOPT definition of Class A Services, No CPO is class A Service, still their demands are reportedly being entertained by the GoM against genuine demands and aspiration of the Armed Forces.

Simultaneously, many interesting but politically dangerous prejudices are being voiced. Some one says like the IAS that they are "Permanent Executives" and they claim they are what constitutes "political Control". The other like IPS are quietly sabotaging Armed Forces interests at the election time or otherwise. These both agencies now joined by some elements in the foreign office are intent upon sorting out the largest Class A service, the Armed Forces, before sorting out each other, which they are bound to do.

That is the logic of Max Weber's and Talcot Parsons findings on "Competitive Elites". The Political Masters are confused, not understanding it and their neutrality is at this juncture thus would be most valuable. Let the Political masters put the IAS in their place as IAS is usurping on their authority in content and form and they are pronouncing themselves as "Permanent Executives". If the Political class find IAS and IPS pervading in states and Center, they better wreck it with out fear of breakdown. I think that time is gone. There are thousands of other agencies including the Congress party structure itself which can be integrating factors. We have passed over the tides of enemies of "Unions" and Mutiny by the Army. All the mutinies now are Political and not necessarily anti national and there is no fear of IAS / IPS generated fear of mutiny of the Armed Forces.

Therefore, I would like to appeal to the GoM not to scuttle Claims of the largest All India and Central Govt class A Service to appease rag tag unorganized organizations called CPOs who are not even Class A services.

As per rules, No NFSG can be granted them leave leave aside equation of their erstwhile Major commandant with the Colonel.


Dear GoM I do not understand why every one in the Central Services want to jump over and down grade Armed forces status specially when Armed Forces does not compete with any Class A Service in any sphere including bribes and corruption. Armed Forces sphare of activities is so different and not competitive with any one.

Honorable GoM is being thoroughly misguided and mis advised as per press reports so far... I request them to take into account principles of larger National Interests, justice, equity and fair play and then decide on the issues. They are requested to ignore shorter utility of IAS and IPS for elections in view. Congress knows that in spite of largest state machineries parties win or loose. So fore-go unrealistic electoral temptations in favor of larger Political interests.

Congress as a Party in spite of Win or loss in ensuing elections, will remain for thousands of years. Let short time benefits not guide the GoM for longer social and political benefits by being taken hostages the IAS. By doing that you shall be doing good to you but destroying future of "Rahul Baba" and Sonia...

Jai Hind
12:22 AM
Anonymous said...

Shiv,
You have done a great job till now.One last request from all forces at least expose the selective leak mechanism instituted so cleverly by the IAS babus.See for example of the 55 pages in the Defence Standing Commitee report why only page 42 was leaked to the press why not the other pages which list out the stresses on officers. Second NDTV ran a story on Siachen clothes. Shouldn't we call it selective blackmail. Expose why Army is not issuing rebuttals -you will get the answer there-check on the gag order given to PRO through RTI you will get another answer there.We shall be ever grateful to you if you bring these facts to light of course at the peril of your channel going the Tehelka way.

Thanks
12:25 AM
Anonymous said...

There is No Davide and rule..
Four demands and bare minimum as Armed Forces actually are not like Police or IAS Unions and do not know "negation".

Their demand are vital bare minimum and all inclusove...by meeting the demands of Lt Cols...we Lt Cols will not let our Generals down...

Lt Cols and Jawans can not not let their Cols , brigs and maj gens down...

It is organizational demand which run across rank and file and let no one Davide us...

Either all demand are met or No demand is met...Let it be clear from the junior lots...

Please do not divide us...it will fail...No one will accept partial redressal....


I will request all Lt gen and equivalents including chiefs to resign if all demands are not fulfilled...such historic opportunities arise but few..

I am sure the generals will understand what will be their "izzat" if any one accepts something over the sacking of their leaders...we do not require Kauals, Gen Vaidyas ans Sushil Kumars in our Armed Forces...
12:43 AM
Anonymous said...

Firstly Headlines Today cannot go the Tehelka way, as it does not have balls. They are hushing and sweeping the Soumya murder case investigation, you think they will go into investigative journalism.

The Today Group is pro-government and even if there is a gag order which goes against the government, you think they'll expose it, and least of all Shiv Aroor, who is busy celebrating, attending birthday parties and boozing.

As it is he was used by selective officers to further their cause, which irked the babus, hence the gag on the remaining parts of the series in the pay commission package.

Shiv Aroor does not even know how to move an RTI, which address to send which queries and where to buy a postal order from and where registeries are done.

NDTV, well thats another NGO, from what I've heard from a colleague of mine who is an ex-NDTV. He says they only do pro-services stories to stay in their good books and be invited for functions and parties. Only positive, propaganda stories for the government is what they do. Will never do an expose, so where from the rebuttals will come.

This Shiv Aroor who stays online all night only to chat or do facebooking, or blogging, since when have you started expecting anything from him. His comfort zone started after his exit from Express and his joining Headlines, as we all know TV does not have journalism, has only pimping and prostitution. There are no stories, and no breaking stories and no exposes. Only made-up girls all over trapping men and speaking with an accent.

Please tell print journalists what you want and expect and ask one of them to do these exposes, not TV chaps and certainly not Shiv Aroor who is busy with life of a different kind. Busy personal life he has as he has just found true love and he has to please his madam 24 hours.
12:48 AM
Aditya said...

Haha I see the above comment by Anon is obviously another ploy by the anti forces lobbies to try and bias yet another outlet against the armed forces. Shiv Aroor has done an excellent job reporting. Carry on, and dont let fraud posters discourage you! Haha, people really react in the funniest of ways...
2:12 AM
Aditya said...

Haha I see the above comment by Anon is obviously another ploy by the anti forces lobbies to try and bias yet another outlet against the armed forces. Shiv Aroor has done an excellent job reporting. Carry on, and dont let fraud posters discourage you! Haha, people really react in the funniest of ways...
2:12 AM
Aditya said...

Haha I see the above comment by Anon is obviously another ploy by the anti forces lobbies to try and bias yet another outlet against the armed forces. Shiv Aroor has done an excellent job reporting. Carry on, and dont let fraud posters discourage you! Haha, people really react in the funniest of ways...
2:12 AM
Anonymous said...

Dear Sir/ Madame,

Certainly Not..Not on blogs...
who are you from Print..and what Print...which print...jis ar log chat pakori khaten hain...and wipe the fllor and sometimes their ass...

You attract our positive attention and we will lift you to the sky.. Armed forces are like those funny guys...

Most of the Print guys do it negatively and by now, we know it is not the Govt or Politicians but IAS and IPS who have been paying for it to denigrate the darling of the Mases "The Armed Forces".. If not they may be your ISI or othe sady pops..

You all get hefty sum to carry out anti Forces stories.. on Court martials..accidents..viilege fueds..fragging...corruption charges, tomato catch ups..whisky and rums... lastlt rapes..if not sufficients then on ineqality and look now ..on Sahayaks...

The sorry state of the Country largely, a result of inefficient administration and misrule, Police Gundagardi, extortions, Police being part of Gangs etc, does not interest you and public because it has become established reality and "No News". No one will be interested to know that a certain SP is in fact Dagwood Bhai helper. People take it for granted every one that Police chaps and IPS is like that without you carrying a Print story. So how can that be news. It is no news bhiru..samajhi kya???


What are you trying to say notorious Phoolan devi Suman Sharma or someone else...that you are Gold ...and shiv is bad..we do not know..not interested.. in your affairs.. why do not you write a good story on tikey and Def secy and how they srew you...

karama..dare / darlking..Karama... acts and deeds matter and speak for itself...It is ultimately our Sanchit Karama which is the spread sheet of the life..even the most patriotic nations like Britain which produced Kim Filby...can we be exception..

I do not not understand why you hurt Armded Forces for your hatred of shiva...i am sure he would have deeply betrayed you..
My sympathies ..i that is the case ...i would myself not like Shiva...the wounds are deep...Darling / Dear...

Express...Times..herald..Tribune..

Jo Bhi Pyaar Se Mila ham usi Ke Ho liye....

Dear, who is interested in your dirty smelling whole...had by none , one or many...what are you joining wars with innocent people who have nothing whatsoever against you...unless you are a Babu...MoD IAS Babu..the Rakshasa...
2:29 AM
Anonymous said...

pl read this article on website"http://www.govexec.com/dailyfed/0507/050307b2.htm"

"Lawmaker backs pay parity, 3.5 percent raise for 2008By Brittany R. Ballenstedt bballenstedt@govexec.com May 3, 2007 The ranking Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Thursday urged House appropriators to ensure parity in 2008 pay adjustments for civilian federal workers and members of the military.
In a letter to leaders of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., argued that the military services and the government's civilian employees work hard to provide protection to Americans, warranting an equal pay increase for the coming year.
The move comes a day after a House Armed Services subcommittee approved a 3.5 percent pay increase for military personnel as part of the fiscal 2008 Defense authorization bill. "I believe it is critical civilian personnel receive a similar increase," Davis said.
He noted that the Bush administration's 2008 budget proposal marks the second consecutive year the president has recognized the importance of pay parity between military and civilian employees. In nearly every year over the last two decades, Congress has provided identical pay adjustments to the two groups, he said.
"I firmly believe it is imperative to continue this tradition," Davis said, "not only to ensure pay parity between military and civilian employees, but to address, to the extent we can, the vast gap between public and private sector wages."
He cited Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that private sector employees earn at least 30 percent more than their public sector civilian counterparts and 10 percent more than their counterparts in the military.
Davis noted that ensuring competitive pay for both military and civilian personnel will give the government an edge in recruiting and retaining top talent. "The federal government may never be able to compete with the private sector, dollar for dollar," he said, "but we must ensure that we do not fall further behind in the battle for talent.""
now look at ourselves
9:18 AM
Anonymous said...

a must read for all:

[http://www.businessandeconomy.org/15052008/storyd.asp?sid=3231&pageno=1]

Keep the page for posterity..
10:14 AM
Anonymous said...

How much money MES and BRO officers associations have paid MoD for changing definition of rank pay??

Earning time for Tirkey????

E-in-C..Listening please??
10:17 AM
Indian army officer? The group B officer. said...

If you do not know what you deserve then you do not deserve to get that.

you do a survey and you will find that at least 75 percent of army officer do not know the meaning of class I officer, how much a class one officer of govt of india is getting. so practically they are make class II by baboos.

do you think if all army officers just stop working today can the country survice even for a day.

if all the four core issues are not met let all officers to put application for 1 day C/L together for personal reason and annonce that particular day to pakistan and china let us see what happens

THE BIGGEST PROBLEM IS THAT ALL ARMY OFFICERS ARE KOOP MANDOOK THEY DO NOT KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING AROUND THEM.

so all well wisher of army just make all army officers aware of everything like mr navdeep is doing in his site.
10:47 AM


Govt rejects higher rank to Defence Secretary

New Delhi, Oct 23: The government has rejected a Parliamentary Committee suggestion to raise the status of Defence Secretary to that of Cabinet Secretary rank to bring them on par with the chiefs of Army, Navy and Air Force.

Defence Minister A K Antony told Rajya Sabha that his ministry felt it was "premature at this stage" to accept the Parliamentary Standing Committee recommendation in this regard.

In the action taken report on the members' suggestions, Antony recalled that the committee had noted that the observations of the Group of Ministers that the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), after its creation would enjoy an equivalent status with Defence Secretary in terms of their working relationship as distinct from the Warrant of Precedence.

"The GOM had further observed that the Defence Secretary should enjoy equivalent status vis-a-vis the Chiefs of Staff in so far as their functional relationship is concerning," the committee had said in its report on March 3 this year.

Whereas the three Chiefs of Staff enjoyed the status of a Cabinet Secretary, the Defence Secretary was only in the rank of Secretary, "a step junior", it noted.

The committee also said the Defence Secretary will function as Principal Defence Adviser to the Defence Minister in a manner similar to the role to be performed by CDS and both will enjoy an equivalent status as far as their working relationship was concerned, and the Chiefs of Staff would attend meetings convened by the Defence Secretary, if required and vice versa, were not being followed.

The Parliamentary Committee also pointed out that the unequal status enjoyed by the Chiefs of Staff vis-a-vis the Defence Secretary at present was causing lack of coordination and synergy in the functional relationship between the Defence Ministry and Services headquarters.

"The Committee, therefore, desire that the government should take immediate steps in regard to upgradation of the rank of Defence Secretary as the Principal Defence Adviser so that the working relations amongst the chiefs and the Defence Secretary are brought on equal footing," it had suggested.

It also wanted the Group of Ministers' recommendation with regard to attending the meetings convened by Defence Secretary by the Chiefs of Staff and vice-versa should be made operational at the earliest.

"These functional arrangements should be done at the earliest to bring about effective synergy amongst the three Services and the Ministry of Defence and provide unified advice to the Prime Minister and Defence Minister," the committee had recommended.

The committee also desired that the government set-up a high-level panel to demarcate clear cut roles of civil and military officials so that duplication of work could be avoided to check delays and responsibility could also be fixed.

In reply, Antony said the roles of both civilian and military officers were well defined and on issues where a clarification was required, it was resolved through mutual consultations.



US training Pakistani forces to fight Taliban

By STEPHEN GRAHAM – 8 hours ago

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) — U.S. special forces have begun teaching a Pakistani paramilitary unit how to fight the Taliban and al-Qaida, hoping to strengthen a key front-line force as violence surges on both sides of the border with Afghanistan.

The sensitive mission puts rare American boots on the ground in a key theater in the war against extremist groups, but it risks fanning anti-U.S. sentiment among Pakistani Muslims already angry over suspected CIA missile attacks on militants in the same frontier region.

"The American special forces failed in Afghanistan and Iraq," said Ameerul Azim, an official in the hard-line Islamic party Jamaat-e-Islami. "Those who failed everywhere cannot train our people."

Despite such complaints, the training program comes as some tribes in the frontier zone are setting up militias to help the Pakistani government combat extremist movements. The new forces have been compared to the Sunni Arab militias in Iraq that helped beat back the insurgency there.

Still, the U.S. training program is reportedly smaller than originally proposed and was delayed, apparently reflecting misgivings in Pakistan's government about allowing U.S. troops on its territory.

Its start has not been officially announced, but a Pakistani military officer and a U.S. defense official told The Associated Press that two to three dozen trainers arrived earlier this month.

The Pakistani said the Americans had already begun training senior personnel of the paramilitary Frontier Corps at an undisclosed location in Pakistan's restive northwest, adjacent to Afghanistan. He said the course included classroom and field exercises.

The Pentagon official said the Americans would stay for a few months. He said that it would likely be a one-time effort and that there were no plans to send more trainers.

Both agreed to discuss the program only if granted anonymity, because details had not been made public.

Asked about the program Thursday, Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman declined to give any specifics. But he contrasted the mission with much larger U.S. training efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan, where U.S. soldiers are embedded with local units on the battlefield.

"It is a train-the-trainer type of concept," Whitman said. "They are not actually conducting operations."

The Frontier Corps is a relic of British rule that was long a poorly armed, untrained police force that the government hopes can be remade into a potent unit capable of confronting Taliban militants.

Its troopers are local men, in contrast to the army, which is dominated by ethnic Punjabis and is viewed as an occupying force by the Pashtun tribes living on both sides of the border. U.S. and Pakistani officials argue that the corps' local knowledge and cultural sensitivities make it the best tool in a battle where winning hearts and minds is crucial.

The goal is that a strong Frontier Corps can take on most combat duties, allowing a gradual pullback of the army that is hoped will ease tensions in the northwest.

The U.S. has poured some $10 billion into Pakistan since the then-president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, turned against his former Taliban allies in Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Most of the money has gone to the army, including the $70 million earmarked for the Frontier Corps program.

U.S. forces already trained Pakistan's Special Services Group, a commando unit that crushed militants holding Islamabad's Red Mosque last year. Washington also has supplied the helicopter gunships that are seeing heavy use in army offensives in several Pakistani border regions.

But with the war dragging in Afghanistan, U.S. lawmakers and commentators have questioned why Pakistan still seems unable to eradicate militant sanctuaries on its side of the border.

"This thought has come pretty late in the day," Rasul Bakhsh Rais, a professor of political sciences, said of Pakistan's decision to let the trainers in. "But still I don't think it is too late, given the fact that this is going to be a very long war."

With many Pakistanis accusing their army of fighting a proxy war against its own citizens at Washington's behest, U.S. officials have said Pakistan was reluctant to accept foreign training, but softened its stance in the light of mounting losses.

Musharraf, who was forced out of office earlier this year, announced a plan in 2007 to build up the Frontier Corps so it could confront Taliban fighters.

At the time, its troops had no body armor, few vehicles and an arsenal of only aging rifles. With U.S. help, the corps has received several more battalions, been armed with tanks and artillery and is now heavily involved in fighting in the Bajur and Swat areas.

American officials have said they are also supplying equipment such as helmets, flak vests and night-vision goggles.

"The hope is that the more trainers we train, the more effective they will be in training their forces and the more capable forces will then be able to take the fight to the militants in the tribal areas where they operate," Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said.

The training program has begun despite strains in Pakistani-U.S. relations.

Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who replaced Musharraf as army chief, and the former leader's successor as president, Asif Ali Zardari, have maintained close ties with Washington. But they have condemned the recent U.S. missile strikes, the latest of which killed nine people Thursday.

Cooperation has also been chilled by an incident in June when U.S. warplanes killed 11 Frontier Corps troopers at a border post. U.S. officials said the action during a skirmish with militants was justified. Pakistan's army insists no shots were fired from the post.

U.S. officials suspect some Frontier Corps troops sympathize with the Taliban and ignore militants sneaking though mountain passes into Afghanistan to attack U.S. and NATO troops.

Pakistani officials agree the corps has problems, but analysts say a better trained force is more likely to have the confidence to take on the militants. American officials also hope it will become a better partner for cross-border cooperation.

Associated Press writers Lolita Baldor in Washington and Munir Ahmad in Islamabad contributed to this report.

India to Train East Timor Army

Friday, 24 October, 2008 | 19:07 WIB

TEMPO Interactive, Dili:India yesterday agreed to train East Timor Navy personnel. The agreement was signed during a meeting between Indian Ambassador to East Timor, Bieren Nanda and State Secretary for Defense Julio Tomas Pinto. In the first phase, 20 out of the entire 75 Naval personnel will be sent to India for training.

The training period is to take place every six months. "The length of training time may be extended depending on the MoU," explained Pinto. East Timor has also agreed to have similar training programs with a number of countries in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia.

The training of East Timor's security forces is part of a preliminary process to take over from international peacekeeping forces led by Australia. There are currently around 1.300 personnel from Australia and New Zealand placed deployed in Indonesia's former 27th province since the May 2006 riots.

On the previous day, Australia announced its plan to reduce the number of its troops in East Timor to 650 personnel beginning next year. According to Australian Defense Minister Joel Fitzgibbon, this measure proves the stability in East Timor has improved.

However, tension still seems to be hanging over East Timor following threats issued by former prime minister Mari Alkatiri. Several days ago, the secretary-general of Fretilin, the biggest opposition party in the country, threatened to deploy their supporters to overthrow prime minister Xanana Gusmao.

Alkatiri has, from the start, rejected the results of last year's parliamentary elections, which was won by a coalition led by Xanana. Alkatiri is accusing his political opponent of cheating, rendering Xanana's regime as illegal.

Xanana did not take it lying down. He warned that anyone who demonstrated in response to Alkatiri would be arrested.

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