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The restructuring of the Indian armed forces into integrated theatre commands is a necessary reform as actors, threats and the environment will change in uncertain ways, but its structure must be simple, flexible and adaptable. Substantiate.

Topic: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

5. The restructuring of the Indian armed forces into integrated theatre commands is a necessary reform as actors, threats and the environment will change in uncertain ways, but its structure must be simple, flexible and adaptable. Substantiate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Live Mint

Why the question:

The Narendra Modi government’s 2019 decision to appoint a chief of defence staff (CDS) and assign to him the task of restructuring India’s armed forces into integrated theatre commands is the most significant defence reform in decades. But its implementation has stirred up a controversy.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the benefits of integrated theatre commands and how it should be achieved whilst maximising its efficacy and minimising conflicts.

Directive word: 

Substantiate – When you are asked to Substantiate, you must pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidence.  You must appraise the worth of the statement in question using suitable case studies or/ and examples.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Start by writing about integrated theatre commands and how it is different from the existing structure of the armed forces.

Body:

In the first part, address the need of the integrated theatre commands with old threats such as Pakistan, Rapid rise of China, recent turmoil in Afghanistan as well as unconventional threats like Cyberthreats.

Write about the structuring of the integrated theatre command and theatres where it will be operationalised. Mention about Chain of command, joint war-fighting doctrine, Modernization, Joint-Operability among the various forces.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward and that this reform that was long overdue as it was suggested by Kargil Review committee way back in 2000.