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Integrated theatre commands

Topics Covered: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

Integrated theatre commands:


Context:

A table-top war-gaming exercise was held recently among the three services of the armed forces (Navy, Army and Airforce).

 

Background:

  • India currently has 19 military commands with 17 of them service-oriented. While both the Army and the Air Force have seven commands each, the Navy has three.
  • India also has a Tri-Service Command — Andaman and Nicobar Command — besides the Strategic Forces Command (SFC), which looks after the country’s nuclear stockpile.

 

What are integrated theatre commands?

  • An integrated theatre command envisages a unified command of the three Services, under a single commander, for geographical areas that are of strategic and security concern.
  • The commander of such a force will be able to bear all resources at his disposal — from the Army, the Indian Air Force, and the Navy — with seamless efficacy.
  • The integrated theatre commander will not be answerable to individual Services.

 

Why does India seek theatre commands?

  • This will help in better planning and military response and also bring down cost.
  • While the cost may go up in the immediate future since all theatres would have to be armed with sufficient systems, it will prove to be cost-effective in the long term as all acquisitions will be a unified one.
  • It will provide a unified approach to fighting the future wars.

 

Proposals in this regard:

The need for a unified approach to war fighting was brought out in the deliberations after the 1999 Kargil battle.

  • The Kargil Review Committee and the then Group of Ministers besides the Naresh Chandra Committee had called for structural changes in higher defence management.
  • It was the Shekatkar committee, headed by Lt Gen. (retd) D.B. Shekatkar, which had recommended the creation of the post of CDS and theatre commands.

 

Insta Curious:

Do you know about the Nuclear Command Authority? Who heads the organisation and what are its functions? Reference

Sources: the Hindu.