GS Paper 3
Syllabus GS Paper III: Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.
Source : Indian Express
Directions: This Article has been taken from the Indian Express Editorial. Go through it once, you can use it for value addition.
Context: Contrary to popular impression, the appointment of a CDS did not call for the immediate creation of theatre commands.
What is CDS?
- He is the single-point military adviser to the government as suggested by the Kargil Review Committee in 1999.
- CDS oversees and coordinates the working of the three Services.
- Age limit: upper age limit for the CDS has been fixed at 65 years.
- He will function as the Principal Military Adviser to the Defence Minister and also as the Permanent Chairman of, the Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC).
- The CDS will be a member of the Defence Acquisition Council and Defence Planning Committee.
Challenges before India’s newly appointed CDS:
- Management of two live borders, force-modernisation, competing budgetary claims and new personnel policies, and pressure to expedite the creation of new joint command structures.
What is integrated theatre command?
- 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.
What are joint commands?
- It is a unified command in which the resources of all the services are unified under a single commander looking at a geographical theatre.
- Functions of joint command:
- The commander of a joint command will have the freedom to train and equip his command.
- He will have the logistics of all the services at his beckoning.
- However, the three services will retain their independent identities as well.
(Fig: General Bipin Rawat is no more)
Why the new CDS must move with caution?
- The threat of china: Any conflict with China will demand forces/resources from 4-6 of India’s 14 single-service, and two tri-service commands (none of them co-located), as well the space and cyber agencies and the Special Forces division.
- Inter-service rivalry: there exists inter-service rivalry among the forces which is delaying the establishment of joint commands.
- Operational guidance issue: while the component commanders may retain a linkage with their chiefs, the question of who will provide operational guidance to the theatre commanders still remains open.
- Air power: the indivisibility of air power has been a bone of contention among the officials of defence forces.
What needs to be done?
- Integrating the service command: into 4-5 geographic or threat-based theatres and placing necessary forces under a single commander charged with the conduct of operations.
- Reconciling service rivalry: the service chiefs have to reconcile themselves to the reality that once theatre commanders assume the “warfighter” role,
- they will be divested of operational responsibilities, and
- assume the “raise-train-sustain” functions, involving recruitment and training of personnel as well as the acquisition of combat wherewithal.
- Nudging IAF: The IAF’s reluctance to share assets must be tempered by the fact that the theatre air assets will be deployed on the advice of and by the IAF component commanders.
- Recasting of present staff colleges: as a “Joint Services Staff College” with changes in its curriculum to produce “joint staff officers,” ready to serve in sister-service HQs, learning in the process to function as future component commanders and theatre commanders.
- About the tri-service command of India
- Kargil review committee.
- Shekatkar committee
- Power and functions of CDS
Q. The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) is responsible not only for the integration of the armed forces but also for solving issues in planning, budgeting and force structuring for a military based on a coherent strategic vision. Analyse.
Q. What are Integrated Theatre Commands? Discuss the prospects and challenges faced in the implementation of integrated theatre commands for India.