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Tuesday, 7 June 2016

From Today's Papers - 07 Jun 2016

Pak ‘not desperate’ for talks
Islamabad, June 6
Pakistan is “not desperate” to resume peace talks with India which has never opened a window of opportunity for dialogue and goodwill with it, Adviser on Foreign Affairs to Prime Minister Sartaj Aziz has said.

“It is a very strange thing to say as it was decided here on December 9 that the dialogue will resume but then the Pathankot incident occurred and everything vanished into thin air,” Aziz told a news channel yesterday.

His remarks came in response to Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar’s recent statement that the window for dialogue with Pakistan was “slowly closing”.

Aziz said if India continues to repeat the old allegation of terrorism when it comes to the negotiating table, they must remember that terrorism is a part of the composite dialogue that Pakistan proposes, Dawn reported.

“They say that they will talk if we (Pakistan) make some progress on terrorism, but we say that they (India) should talk on all issues, including Kashmir,” Aziz said.

Aziz also said that Pakistan was “not desperate for talks and there is no restlessness on the Pakistani side for dialogue”.

“The whole world agrees that India and Pakistan should have composite dialogue,” Aziz said, adding if the region has to see peace, it has to see co-ordination first.

Aziz said Pakistan was not unaware of Indian efforts to integrate Kashmir and change its demography as “such efforts by India would not succeed”. Pakistan is supporting the Kashmiri people “morally and diplomatically” and will raise the issue with the UN General Assembly, Human Rights Council and also with permanent members of UN Security Council, he said. — PTI

‘India should talk on all issues’

It is a very strange thing to say as it was decided here on December 9 that the dialogue will resume but then the Pathankot incident occurred and everything vanished into thin air... They say that they will talk if we (Pakistan) make some progress on terrorism, but we say that they (India) should talk on all issues, including Kashmir. —Sartaj Aziz, adviser to pakistan pm
After Pulgaon Fire, Army Conducts Safety Audits Of Arms Depots In Eastern India
Kolkata:  A week after 19 soldiers were killed in the explosion at the Army's ammunition depot at Pulgaon in Maharashtra, the Eastern Command has undertaken a safety audit of depots in eastern India.

"We have a few major ammunition dumps in the east and we have done a safety and technical audit of all of them and they are safe," said Lieutenant General Praveen Bakshi, Eastern Army Commander, in Kolkata on Monday.

"Minor hiccups do happen. Some of our ammunition which has to be kept outside our dumps may not be in the best of locations. But that is part of our infrastructure development which goes into our border areas," he added.

In Manipur, where six jawans were killed in an ambush on May 22, Lieutenant General Bakshi said, "Manipur was not a slip up. Every unit is always prepared. But this unfortunate incident happened. Luckily, only one vehicle got caught, soldiers in the other two vehicles reacted very bravely."

He denied some reports that the Indian Army had crossed into Myanmar in "hot pursuit though insurgency knows no boundaries."

Lieutenant General Bakshi said if the Army is required to address insurgency, it requires the Armed Forces Special Powers Act or AFSPA to be in place. "If we don't have AFSPA, our hands are tied and we cannot do our jobs effectively. AFSPA is an enabling provision, not a draconian one, as it is made out to be."

Lieutenant General Bakshi also launched VEcare or Veteran Emergency care on Monday. Veterans seeking medical help in an emergency can dial the helpline number, 1904. Checks and balances have been put in place so that PIOs - Pakistan Intelligence Operatives - do not misuse the system. There are 24 lakh defence forces' veterans in India.
New Indian Cyber Command Urged Following Recent Attacks
NEW DELHI — Amid media reports of a suspected cyberattack by a Pakistan-based group targeting the Indian government, some officials and analysts here are calling for progress on a proposed tri-service command on cybersecurity that is still pending approval by the Ministry of Defense.

The command would be led by the Indian army, air force and navy.

"India does not have adequate institutional and human resource capability to counter cyberattacks similar to the one by the Pakistan-based group," defense analyst Surya Kiran Sharma said.

Evidence of "an advanced persistent threat (APT) against Indian diplomatic and military resources" was first reported on March 7 by US-based cybersecurity solutions company Proofpoint.

Indian MoD officials would neither confirm nor deny whether their officials were targeted from Pakistan.

"The matter has come before MoD and is now being examined," spokesman Nitin Wakankar said.

Following Proofpoint's March 7 report, another security firm, FireEye, reported that on May 18 a Pakistani group registered a fake news website and sent spear-phishing emails to Indian government officials.

The emails referenced the Indian government's 7th Central Pay Commission, a topic of interest among officials.

A senior Indian Navy official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, noted that a proposal to set up a dedicated tri-service command for cybersecurity has been forwarded to the MoD after top officials with the Indian air force, army and navy approved the idea. But the plan has yet to be approved.

"A draft proposal for setting up a separate tri-command on cyberwarfare was prepared in consultations with the chiefs of the Indian air force, Indian army [and] Indian navy after Chinese hackers broke into the computer systems of the headquarters of the Eastern [Naval] Command in Visakhapatnam in 2012 where the homemade Arihant nuclear submarine was undergoing sea trials," the Navy official said.

In 2013, computer systems of the Defence Research and Development Organization were breached by Chinese hackers.

According to Sharma, India is ill-prepared for a cyberwar.

"India released its National Cyber Policy in 2013, which had the ambitious aim of creating 500,000 cyber warriors," the defense analyst said. "However, no significant work has been done on the provisions of the cyber policy. India is inadequately prepared to counter cyberwarfare, as is evident from the numerous attacks on national websites."
Pakistan’s defence at risk?
Today Indian department of space has budget of round about one billion dollars, whereas SUPARCO’s size in terms of monetary funds is 30.6 million dollars
Amid the Panama leaks, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came up with an idea of addressing jalsas (rallies) in the whole country. Starting from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, he is offering laptops and millions of rupees for development projects to save his seat with taxpayers’ money. While the leader of one of the main opposition parties, Imran Khan, has a dream of becoming prime minister with no prior experience of running a government, and is asking us for ‘dharnas’ (sit-in protests), and this time in Raiwind, Lahore. Whereas, the Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif endorsed the idea of across the board accountability and sacked six army officers over corruption. Several actors again analysed this situation as a clash between civil and military policies.

Well, isn’t that a story!

Allow us to tell you another story from the neighbouring eastern border country, India. On April 28, 2016 Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) launched seventh and final satellite to complete the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), which will be called NAVIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation) as announced by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

It all started when Indian army failed in monitoring Pakistani troops, and denial of the US to give access of its GPS system to India during the Kargil War. Though, recently, Senior Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, Ajey Lele, has denied this Kargil story saying there is no official confirmation.

However, several Indian newspapers second the fact that the main objective was the militar
y use, and the chief beneficiary of this system is the Indian military. The total cost of the project was 211 million dollars, and it will provide accurate information regarding surveillance, reconnaissance, imaging, navigation and communications in India as well as from the extended area of 1,500 kilometres in the region.

This system will offer two types of services, Standard Positioning Service for civilian users and Restricted Service, which is an encrypted service for military and agencies. Along with NAVIC, India is already working on fourth generation GSAT dedicated military communication satellites. In this respect, ISRO successfully launched GSAT-6 in August 2015, which transmits five spot beams over the Indian mainland with help of a very exceptionally huge antenna. In modern network-centric warfare a large antenna will assist Indian strategic forces to communicate with each other on a secure band.

Similarly, India’s GSAT-7 satellite was successfully launched in August 2013, programmed to assist the Indian Navy to enhance its blue water combat skills. Surely, it is imposing security challenges for Pakistan while strengthening the Indian battlefield strategy, robust system for location identification and navigational support. It will connect all three domains that are sea-based assets (warships, nuclear submarines and air craft carries), land based assets (troops formation, conventional war tech, ballistic and cruise missiles) and air force assets (combat aircrafts).

Besides, Indian surveillance capabilities will then be able to get accurate information on Pakistani territory, its China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, logistics, sensitive naval, air force, military installations and deployment, etc. Pakistan established its space programme — Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) -- eight years earlier than the Indian space organisation, but SUPARCO is now nowhere near ISRO. It is obvious that priorities of successive Pakistan governments are off the beam in term of emphasis on space technology. Today Indian department of space has budget of round about one billion dollars, whereas SUPARCO’s size in terms of monetary funds is 30.6 million dollars. India signed a framework agreement with NASA for future cooperation in 2008, and in 2016, inked agreements for launching satellites from the UK and Singapore.

The Indian defence ministry has already hinted that space warfare is a priority area till 2025 under “Technolog
y Perspective and Capability Roadmap.” It aims to assure key technology requirements of the Indian armed forces and integrated warfare by reducing the risk in battlefield with the capable system of delivering information on real time basis.

Pakistan should also explore such avenues to create a platform so that SUPARCO can also deliver indigenous navigational satellite system. For instance, Pakistan developed the tactical nuclear weapons (TNWs) to successfully counter the so-called proactive strategy of the Indian Cold Start Doctrine (CSD). We are proud of our scientists and engineers yet the decision of its deployment and use is reserved with the National Command Authority.

By this mean, we will get an alternative way of shadowing Indian military strategy, troops and assets deployment in case CSD is implemented, and we can also assure effective maneuverability to deploy TNWs, ballistic and cruise missiles. Considerably, the civil uses and benefits of the navigational system are huge, which will also improve our disaster management expertise.

Even though our fragile economy is the main hurdle in the way of social and technological development, nonetheless government, opposition parties and military establishments must plan to allocate appropriate budget for these purposes because development of advance technology is the need of time.

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