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Friday, 18 March 2011

From Today's Papers - 18 Mar 2011

Indira, Manekshaw, Lt Gen Aurora likely on Dhaka’s honour list

Ajay Banerjee/TNS  New Delhi, March 17 Bangladesh is all set to honour the Indian leadership (both political and military) for its role in the formation of the country in 1971.India’s eastern neighbour is warming up to New Delhi after some years of mistrust. It had recently agreed to allow India road access to the North-East and is also helping in nabbing the insurgents.  Government sources confirmed that Dhaka has sent a detailed proposal with some names of the persons, who would be honoured, to the Defence Ministry. A top source revealed that one of the names being discussed is of the serving Chief of the Indian Army, Gen VK Singh, who as a young lieutenant, was posted in the war zone in 1971.  Minister for Press in the Bangladesh High Commission at New Delhi, Enamul Hoque Chowdhury, said the honour-list was being prepared. It will have the names of Indian soldiers and officers who laid down their lives for the creation of Bangladesh.. He said the final list would be announced in Dhaka. “In case, a person on the list is dead, his kin would be invited for the felicitation programme,” Chowdhury said.  Bangladesh had planned to release the honour list on March 26 - the day when Sheikh Mujib-ur-Rehman made the famous declaration of Independence in 1971 through a broadcast from a clandestine radio station located in Kalurghat in Chittagong. But there has been some delay. But the plan has been cleared by the Bangladesh Cabinet, officials confirmed.  Meanwhile, independent sources confirmed that the list will also have the name of Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India.  Former Army chief, Field Marshall Sam Manekshaw, the then Eastern Army commander, Lt Gen JS Aurora and his Chief of Staff, Lt Gen JFR Jacob are most likely to be feted.

BRO to build 243 roads along Pakistan border
Vijay Mohan/TNS  Chandigarh, March 17 Even as the Border Roads Organisation has drawn up ambitious plans to construct 243 roads along the India-Pakistan border, its past performance has cast a shadow on its ability to complete the projects within the stipulated time-frame.  Conceived under the BRO’s Long Term Perspective Plan (LTPP), these roads in Punjab, Rajasthan and Gujarat are expected to be completed by 2022. These would meet the logistic and communications requirements of the paramilitary forces during peacetime and that of the armed forces during hostilities.  During a recent visit to Chandigarh, Chairman of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Defence Satpal Maharaj had pointed out the poor state of infrastructure in India’s border regions and had stressed upon the need for the BRO to expedite work on the construction of roads in remote areas as that had a direct bearing on the internal security as well as strategic requirements.  The 2012-2022 LTPP will see to the construction of a total of 281 roads covering 14,857 km in border areas, including the North-East. The total scope of works during this period is estimated to be Rs 25,270 crore, which will include two works abroad at an estimated cost of Rs 960 crore.  However, the BRO’s performance during the LTPP covering the period 2002-2012 has put a question mark over its ability to deliver the proposed works by 2022. The 2002-12 LTPP involved construction of 277 roads totalling 13,100 km at an estimated cost of Rs 24,886 crore. Till the end of 2010, only about 830 km or 7 per cent of the target in terms of length could be achieved. Out of the planned 277 roads, only 29 roads were completed and the work on 168 roads was in progress. Work wasn’t even started on 80 roads measuring 2,624 km.  Though funds are not a constraint, BRO officials cite manpower problems coupled with a significant increase in the scope of its works as the reason for projects lagging behind schedule. According to the available information, the shortfall of officers in the BRO is to the tune of 36 per cent, while the shortage in the subordinate staff is 13 per cent.

Indian Army Chief Honoured at the US Army War  College Hall of Fame 
 In a rare event of its kind, General VK Singh becomes the first Indian Officer to be inducted into the ‘Hall of Fame’ of US Army War College, Carlisle, USA, on 11 Mar 2011. This distinction is extended by the US Army, to all officers from friendly foreign countries, who rise to the post of ‘Chief’ of their respective Armies, after attending the coveted Course at US Army War College. A masters degree in Strategic Studies is awarded on completion of the course. General VK Singh (then Brigadier) passed out from the US Army War College in 2000-01.  2. The ceremony was hosted by Major General Gregg F Martin, the Commandant of US Army War College, Carlisle, where General VK Singh, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC, Chief of Army Staff was ceremoniously inducted into the ‘Hall of Fame’. As part of the ceremony the Chief’s photograph was placed in the hallowed portals of the college. On this occasion, General VK Singh also delivered a talk on ‘Strategic & Defence Leadership’ to the students of US Army War College, where he highlighted the future challenges, which will be faced by future leaders.

Army not against AFSA amendment in JK
By Neyaz Elahi   Srinagar, Mar 17 (IBNS) The army in Kashmir is not averse to amending the provisions of Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) in the trouble-torn state so far it does not come in the way of fighting terrorists, said a senior army official during a visit to Haiderbeigh Patan in Baramulla.  AFSPA has often been blamed for human rights abuses and excesses by the defence forces in the Kashmir Valley.  Maintaining that Army has no problem in amending the provisions of AFSPA, the General Officer Command (GOC) of Srinagar-based 15 Corps Lt General S A Hasnain said that as long as its revocation doesn’t affect their operations against militants, the Army deployed in J&K to fight counter insurgents has no problem.  "Two committees had already been setup in this regard and I am the member of the one. Soon a meeting will take place with the government and I will raise this issue," he said.  He said the Army has reports that militants across the Line of Control (LoC) will attempt to infiltrate into the state in the next few days.  "Snow is melting fast and we have received reports that there is concentration (of militants) at the training camps and lauching pads again," Lt Gen Hasnain said.  Lt General S A Hasnain’s visit to Haiderbeigh Patan Thursday brought a cheerful smile on the faces of two handicapped Kashmiri youths, Javid Ahmed and Ghulam Mohammad.  Hasnain gave away two motor bikes to these youth each costing Rs. 95000/.  "I have fulfilled my promise. I want to do a lot for the people and want to bring a smile on their faces," Hasnain told people present there.  Youths from Watargam Kreeri Patan requested the General to provide them books and study material for competitive examinations, to which General cheerfully obliged.  Speaking to reporters, General Officer Command (GOC) of Srinagar-based 15 Corps Lt General S A Hasnain said that there are still certain areas in Valley where people support militants.  "We are trying to know why it is the case and under which circumstances people in Shopian, Tral and Sopore support militants," he said.  "People must be having some problem and we want to relieve them from their problems. We will certainly address their problems," Hasnain said.  While replying to a question, Hasnain said that there were recent encounters in Shopian, Tral and Sopore. "The positive aspect of these skirmishes was that no civilian got affected and it is a good sign. Security Forces are doing a good job," he said.  Lt General S A Hasnain said that rehabilitation policy for those who have crossed the border is a step taken by the government but the Army believes that people should be allowed to enter into the Valley after proper verification.

'Increased cooperation in South Asia needed'
TNN | Mar 17, 2011, 11.50pm IST PUNE: General V K Singh, Chief of Army Staff on Thursday stressed on increasing the cooperation between south Asian countries for a stable and secure south Asia, said a media release of defence department.  Singh was addressing the academicians and senior Army officers on 'Security of South Asia and its Implications for India', at the Yashwantrao Chavan - National Centre of International Security and Defence Analysis ( YC-NISDA).  The NISDA was set up under the aegis of the University Grants Commission as an integral part of the Department of Defence and Strategic Studies ( DDSS) in the University of Pune (UoP) to advance a comprehensive understanding of national security and harmonise them with universal security concerns.  General Singh brought out the historical linkages between India and the countries of south Asia. He explained the geo-strategic and geo-political importance of the area in the realm of global security scenario and how India, being a regional power, can and is contributing towards stability and prosperity of the region. The security scenario prevalent in the region demands stability and strong leadership - a role India alone can play effectively, he said.During his address, the Army Chief stressed upon the imperative requirement of cooperation and working together to ensure a stable and secure south Asia.

GOC, 15 Corps reviews security in J&K 
Srinagar, Mar 17 (PTI) Security advisor to J&K Chief Minister and GOC of Indian Army''s strategic 15 Corps Lt Gen S A Hasnain today reviewed the security situation in the Valley with top police and paramilitary officials.  "The meeting deliberated on numerous security issues and took a holistic view of the prevailing external and internal environment in the valley," a defence spokesman said after the meeting.  He said the security officials, which included Director General of Police Kuldeep Khoda, deliberated on the initiatives being undertaken and carried out a holistic introspection of the way ahead.  Addressing the meeting, Lt Gen Hasnain complimented the officers of the civil administration, CRPF, BSF, Police and intelligence agencies on the high level of synergy that exists between all stake holders in addressing the security concerns of the Valley. He emphasized the need to consolidate the gains and also be alive to the future challenges.

Indian & International Artillery Commanders to Discuss World's Largest Modernisation Programme
Director General of Indian Artillery to Join International Artillery Commanders at New Delhi Conference to Discuss World's Largest Artillery Modernisation Programme    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE PRLog (Press Release) – Mar 17, 2011 – Senior officers responsible for the artillery modernisation programme of the Indian Armed Forces will be delivering presentations alongside international artillery commanders at Defence IQ's Future Artillery India conference, taking place 20th-22nd June 2011 at Le Méridien New Delhi, India.  As the country's Armed Forces embark upon an estimated US $8 billion upgrade programme, Indian Generals from the Directorate of Artillery, Indian Ministry of Defence and associated laboratories will provide detailed, high-level briefs on current capabilities and their specific plans for modernisation.  They will be joined by senior artillery commanders from around the world to discuss the latest advances in doctrine, strategy and operational feedback from the front line.  The expert speaker panel includes:  •   Lt General J.P. Singh, Deputy Chief of the Army Staff (Policy and Systems), Indian Army •   Lt General Vinod Nayanar, Director General, Directorate of Artillery, Indian Army •   Major General PK Chakravorty, VSM, Additional Director General Artillery, Integrated Headquarters of the Ministry of Defence, Indian Armed Forces •   Shri S. Sundaresh, Chief Controller R&D (Armament and Combat Engineering), DRDO •   Dr Anil Dattar, Director, Armament Research and Development Establishment, DRDO •   Major General David Halverson, Commanding General of Fires Centre of Excellence, US Army •   Major General Thierry Ollivier, Commander, Force Employment and Doctrine Centre, French Army •   Brigadier General David Schuissa, Chief of Artillery Corps, Israeli Defence Force  "Future Artillery India will offer a unique opportunity to exchange views on technology, concept and employment of artillery with reputed serving officers, scientists and engineers from around the world. It will be the artillery event of the summer", confirms Colonel (Ret'd) A.K. Sharma, former Indian Army Officer and Editor of the South Asian Defence & Strategic Review.

Tale of two defence policies
Harsh V Pant  China has declared that its official defence budget for 2011 will rise by 12.7 percent from the previous year. Last year there was a lot of hoopla surrounding the fact that China had announced a mere 7.5 percent jump in defence budget. It was the first time since the 1980s that China’s defence spending increased by a single-digit percentage. But this year we are back to the norm of double-digit increases.  Divisions within China about the future course of nation’s foreign policy are more stark than ever. It is now being suggested that much like young Japanese officers in the 1930s, young Chinese military officers are increasingly taking charge of strategy with the result that rapid military growth is shaping the nation’s broader foreign policy objectives. Civil-military relations in China are under stress with the PLA asserting its pride more forcefully than even before and demanding respect from other countries. “A country needs respect, and a military also needs respect,” wrote a major general last year in the PLA’s newspaper. Not surprisingly, China has been more aggressive in asserting its interests not only vis-a-vis India but also vis-a-vis the United States, the European Union, Japan and Southeast Asian states.  The increasing assertion by the Chinese military and changing balance of power in the nation’s civil-military relations should be a real cause of concern for China’s neighbours. The pace of Chinese military modernisation has already taken the world by surprise and it is clear that the process is going much faster than many had anticipated. A growing economic power, China is now concentrating on the accretion of military might so as to secure and enhance its own strategic interests. China, which has the largest standing army in the world with more than 2.3 million members, continues to make the most dramatic improvements in its nuclear force among the five nuclear powers, and improvements in its conventional military capabilities are even more impressive.  What has been causing concern in Asia and beyond is the opacity that surrounds China’s military build-up, with an emerging consensus that Beijing’s real military spending is at least double the announced figure. The official figures of the Chinese government do not include the cost of new weapon purchases, research or other big-ticket items for China’s highly secretive military. As a result, the real figures are much higher than the revealed amount. Despite this, India’s own defense-modernization program is faltering. This year the Indian government has allocated only 1.8 percent of its GDP to defense, though ostensibly the military expenditure has gone up by 11.58 percent. This is only the second time in over three decades that the defense-to-GDP ratio has fallen below 2 percent of GDP. This is happening at a time when India is expected to spend $112 billion on capital defense acquisitions over the next five years in what is being described as “one of the largest procurement cycles in the world.” Indian military planners are shifting their focus away from Pakistan as China takes centre-stage in future strategic planning. Over the past two decades, the military expenditure of India has been around 2.75 percent, but since India has been experiencing significantly higher rates of economic growth over the last decade compared to any other time in its history, the overall resources that it has been able to allocate to its defense needs has grown significantly. The armed forces have long been asking for an allocation of 3 percent of the nation’s GDP to defense. But defense expenditures alone will not solve all the problems plaguing Indian defense policy. More damagingly, with the exception of this year, for the last several years now the defense ministry has been unable to spend its full budgetary allocation.  The defense-acquisition process remains mired in corruption and bureaucratic red tape. A series of defense procurement scandals since the late 1980s have also made the bureaucracy risk averse, thereby delaying the acquisition process. A large part of the money is surrendered by the defense forces every year because labyrinthine bureaucratic procedures involved in the procurement process make it impossible to spend the entire budget.  India’s indigenous defense-production industry has time and again demonstrated its inability to meet the demands of the armed forces. The Indian armed forces keep waiting for arms and equipment while the Finance Ministry is left with unspent budgets year after year. Most large procurement programs get delayed, resulting in cost escalation and technological or strategic obsolescence of the budgeted items. The Indian government has yet to demonstrate the political will to tackle the defense-policy paralysis that seems to be rendering all claims of India’s rise as a military power increasingly hollow. The capability differential between China and India is rising at an alarming rate. An effective defense policy is not merely about deterring China. In the absence of an effective defense policy, India will lose the confidence to conduct its foreign policy unhindered from external and internal security challenges.

Tracking Policy Research on Military Psychology
P. K. Gautam  March 17, 2011  Policy related research should be evaluated for its impact factor and whether it has succeeded in initiating a debate in policy circles. This commentary revisits some issues that were put forward for review in the 2008 book Composition and Regimental System of the Indian Army: Continuity and Change.  In a recently concluded international conference organised by the Defence Institute of Psychological Research on “Advances in Military Psychology: Soldiers Preparedness,” India-specific case studies and examples were cited by the distinguished speakers. In the policy recommendations of 2008, I had wrongly assumed that there was a dearth of studies on this aspect. I have since found that many papers on the subject have been written by military sociologists, psychologists and anthropologists. There is now sufficient data on troop behaviour, stress and leadership during counter-insurgency and counter-terror operations. Modernisation notwithstanding, it is also well established and eloquently argued by Dr. Reuven Gal that the forces which drive men in battle continue to be self preservation, unit cohesion, leadership and commitment. Yet, as he cautioned during his lecture, the old modes of battlefield training at the levels of sub-unit and small unit, such as fire and move, battle craft and drill still had an important role to play. It is no use learning or re-learning these lessons as the Israeli defence force painfully realised in Lebanon in 2006.  What is, however, not acceptable is that the text book on human psychology prescribed for army officers for competitive examinations, like the staff college, continues to be the Psychology for the Armed Forces edited by E.G Boring, which was written soon after the Second World War. This, in spite of suggestions for change!  Why has this book not been changed? Who is the policy maker in this case? According to a distinguished civilian psychologist, the academic community will be very glad to help if approached by the services. Bruce L.R. Smith, in his book The Rand Corporation: Case Study of Non Profit Advisory Corporation (1966), argued that the communication of results is almost as important as the research. This commentary is one attempt to communicate. IDSA researchers have been told that busy policy makers have no time to read books or even articles. Newspaper op-eds, however, have an instant impact, and the best are executive summaries and brief comments.  There is now an Army Training Command besides the Directorate General of Military Training. Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff is also now actively attempting ‘jointness’ in issues that impact force readiness, training and education. The Indian National Defence University is also in its embryonic stage. What needs to be pointed out is that changing a text book is in no way a decision that requires approval and vetting by the highest authority. It has no great financial implications. It is also in no way controversial like the other vexed issues of civil-military relations or arms procurement.  To be fair, there were possibly competing demands on the time of the decision makers and the line staff in this particular case and so it could not be addressed earlier. This phenomenon is akin to what has been highlighted by Indian academics in the matter of the study of international relations (IR) in India. It has been observed that the syllabus is not updated by universities in India within an acceptable time frame. The result is that, even as late as 1994, the IR theory course for the Masters level at Jawaharlal Nehru University still featured Han’s Morgenthau’s Politics Among Nations.  It is thus vital for the Indian army to get pamphlets, text books and other books that are contemporary and promote awareness of modern research and thought. Modernisation has to be not only of weapons and organisations but also of the mind. The training establishments and directorates should review the prescribed syllabus and training schedule and approach the DRDO to suggest new text books for competitive examinations. The pamphlets on leadership and military command can likewise be updated by the general staff as per prescribed procedures. This process can be undertaken once every decade.  Finally, the absence of large scale inter-state wars since 1971 does not mean that training routines to harden troops to withstand the psychological shock of the battlefield can be done away with. Rather, routines such as battle inoculation with live ammunition and other similar activities assume greater importance. Today, a large percentage of troops have no idea of the psychological impact of fire power. The figure could be as high as 99 per cent. The first few days in a shooting war will remain crucial and decisive. Thus, old practices of training troops for inter-state wars must also be revitalised to sustain troop cohesion and build resilience. Battle inoculation is the first priority.

'Joining the armed forces has always been my dream'
TNN | Mar 17, 2011, 12.43am IST PUNE: It will be a career in the navy for Shikha Awasthi, slated to be the recipient of this year's Sword of Honour for overall academic and extra-curricular excellence from the Armed Forces Medical Services.  "I opted for the navy as my parents live in Hyderabad. This way, I get to be closer to them. Otherwise, all three services - the army, navy and air force - are as good as each other," she said.  Daughter of Santosh Kumar Awasthi, a former armyman who is currently employed with the State Bank of India, it had always been a given that Shikha would choose a career in the defence forces. "This has always been my dream," she said. A strong academic career ensures she will join as a doctor.  Apart from the Sword of Honour, newly minted Surgeon Sub Lieutenant Awasthi will also receive the President's gold medal and Kalinga trophy for outstanding academic performances. Awasthi attributes her success to her supportive parents and faculty at the Armed Forces Medical College. "We have the best faculty out here. However hard we work, they work harder," she said.  Awasthi hails from Rae Bareilly, UP, though her family has settled in Hyderabad. She did her schooling from KV Bolarum before joining the AFMC, Pune, in 2006. Her achievements at the AFMC include distinctions in 12 subjects, 20 academic awards, topping all MBBS exams in the college and standing first in the university in the final MBBS (part-I) exams. Expectedly, she holds her alma mater in high regard. "The AFMC is the best college. The best facet about it is its strong emphasis on academics, the mainstay of a medical professional. Anyone who wishes to become a doctor should come to the AFMC," she said.  Though she is unclear about the precise subject of her post-graduate specialisation, it is most likely to be a choice between general medicine and obstetrics and gynaecology. It is difficult to comment right now, as subjects turn out to be different in practice from the theory," Awasthi said.Her hobbies include singing, music and painting, apart from regular treks with the Adventure Club of the AFMC.Awasthi has a simple message for youngsters. "Study hard and enjoy life. If you want to become a doctor, join the AFMC."

Indian Army to procure Medium-Range Loitering Missile
By Frontier India | March 17th, 2011 | Category: Indian Army News | No Comments »  Diversifying its artillery, the Indian Army has planned to acquire medium-range loitering missile that can strike at a target after hovering over it for 30 minutes and sending in critical data on the enemy installation.  Defence Ministry’s Annual Report tabled in the Parliament yesterday said the Artillery Fired Medium-Range Loitering Missile can strike a target with a missile’s precision and has loitering capability like a unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).  The system has the capability for acquisition of targets and precision engagements. Each system can carry out one combat mission. “The proposal is under progress,” as per the report.  The loitering missile will be equipped with a conventional warhead. The range of warheads will include anti-tank and anti-material warheads with deep penetration against armour.  Israel Aerospace Industries and US’ Lockheed Martin are two major loitering missile developers and manufacturers.

The Indian Army must speak
!   The Indian Army is a cohesive, secular and dedicated organization. In fact, it is dedicated to the fault. Most army personnel are innocent and sensitive. It is these personnel who were in the forefront in Kargil, and it is these personnel who have saved Kashmir and the northeast for India. It is these personnel that the nation relies on for any eventuality or mess created by other organizations.  More than managers, the officers who lead these men are leaders. They are effective because they lead by example. For the men they command, they are like Gods.      ...respect and love of Indians for the Indian Army is now being, advertently and inadvertently, subverted by the media.  A great nation must have a great army not only in terms of fighting prowess but for its institutional credibility and aggregate character. The character of any army is the aggregate character of its personnel who constitute it. On this score, the Indian Army is at the highest end of the scale. It is for this reason that the Indian Army is still revered and loved institution.  No army can function without the love of its people.  The same very respect and love of Indians for the Indian Army is now being, advertently and inadvertently, subverted by the media. It is not difficult to distinguish between the advertent and inadvertent reporting in this regard.  Does praising a chief minister at a military function for certain qualities constitute a blasphemy? Is not the chief minister of a state a constitutional authority? Are Army Officers expected to weigh or limit their apolitical comments based on the preferences of a particular political segment or a section of the media?  The media by questioning the comments of the General has made an entirely innocuous and courteous gesture a political controversy. It is no coincidence that most of the English newspapers in the country have carried this insignificant piece of news in almost similar tenor.      Seeds of suspicion have been sowed in the public mind about corruption being growing phenomenon in the Army. Most of them is through exaggerated stories. Some are fabricated at the behest of inimical and anti-national elements thriving in India.  On another occasion, a television journalist while interviewing the Army Chief, mischievously and completely out of context, dropped the name of Lt Col Purohit and his culpability in the Samjhauta blasts. The Army Chief in his innocence and on the spur of the moment said that Purohit was an ‘aberration’. The sense of triumph on the interviewer could then be easily discerned. Probably, the agenda of the journalist was to establish the imaginary inroads that the phenomenon of so-called ‘Hindu Terror’ had made into the Army. The fact of the matter is that Lt Col Purohit’s involvement in any terror activity is far from proved and the matter is still subjudice. Intriguingly, there are three sets of confessional statements with regard to Samjhauta blasts and the name of Lt Col Purohit figures in only one. The journalist also knows very well that if Purohit is found guilty on any account, the Army and its legal system will come down heavily, much more heavily than any Civil Court in the country.  The journalist, thus, in keeping with the agenda of vested interests cleverly sought to question the very secular credentials of the Indian Army. It is the same vested interests who are publishing leaks of investigations including those from the Military Intelligence on a daily basis and that too on their front pages.  It is a well known fact that the legal procedures and provisions in the army are such that the rank and the standing of the officer is hardly any insulation. It was evident in the first major sting operation in this country. Allegedly, the sting operation was done at the behest of vested players to bring down the then government. The Army Officers became a tool in that process. It was an abominable to see the lecherous way in which the journalists tried to lure the officers. The government stayed. It was only the Army Officers who were punished. All the other culprits prospered and some of them continue to do so. The journalists too have prospered. One Army Officer in the finest tradition of the armed forces owned up his guilt, though the degree was ridiculous by today’s standards prevailing in the country. The media did not have the character to appreciate this act.  The Sukhna scam to begin with was projected as ‘unauthorized sale of defence land’ for ulterior motives. It took some days for the media to understand the case and later halfhearted clarifications were made that the issue under question was granting of NOC for a project involving a civil piece of land. There was no trail or proof or even direct allegation of exchange of money. The damage by then had been done. Editor's Pick      * Unmanned Vehicles and Modern Day Combat     * A Lesson in Ethics by an Army Officer     * Where are the real leaders?  The media did not find it suitable to compliment the Army about being intolerant and sensitive about the act of impropriety. The whole case was drummed for at least for two weeks. The guilty have been punished after most swift dispensation of justice.  Compare the media enthusiasm about the crores of Rupees appropriated by the IAS couple. Has the media accepted the growing level of corruption in the bureaucracy and politics, as fate accompli? Do they feel that unless there is a scam of the magnitude of 2G Spectrum, there is no news value? Do they fear of legal and financial reprisal in exposing corrupt deeds of some very powerful people? Do they therefore find the Army as the most convenient prey?  This constant badgering of the Army by the media has begun to take its toll. Seeds of suspicion have been sowed in the public mind about corruption being growing phenomenon in the Army. Most of them is through exaggerated stories. Some are fabricated at the behest of inimical and anti-national elements thriving in India.  The only way the army can tackle them is by being transparent, bold and more interactive with the media. The senior army officers must defend the honour and reputation of their subordinates in prompt and cogent manner, if they are being unfairly tarnished. Leaders in the army cannot and should not continue with an image that has been sullied.  In an organization of the size of Indian Army, there will be shortcomings and unsavory incidents. The Indian Army therefore must continue to be introspective, but as an institution, it has nothing to be apologetic about.

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