Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Quick Analysis of Key Issues Affecting General V.K. Singh, COAS Relations with Indian Ministry of Defense, MoD:

Analysis of key issues affecting General V.K. Singh, COAS, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC, relations with MoD:

1.   Date of Birth Controversy: Essentially stoked by the MoD, this discrepancy in his age was leaked to the media, to try and limit the General’s tenure, generally seen as tough and non-pliable.  Discussion of next in line for command-Gen Bikram Singh and General Parnaik is an old ploy employed by MoD bureaucracy to ‘tune’ officers.
2.   Several postings and promotions recommended by the COAS have been kept in abeyance on the issue of frequent changes to promotion policy by the MoD. This is nothing but blackmail and violation of protocol and undue interference by the MoD, to promote favoritism and usual nepotism associated with political appointments. It has also been seen as quid pro quo against the tough line adopted by Gen. VKS as COAS. The resulting stalemate saw dozens of officers retiring in the ensuing period, depriving the Army of critical trained manpower.
3.   Refusal to involve Indian Army in Maoist fight: With the Armed Forces already stretched in new force projection on the Chinese borders, as well as the CI Grid in Kashmir, the correct refusal of COAS to embroil the Army in CI operations in the heartland, especially since it faces AFSPA problems in Kashmir and the North East, not supported by the MHA or the MoD Bureaucracy, and politicians despite being in these CI theatres at the request of the Union Government of India or the State Governments, as an aid to Civil Authority, has not gone down well with the MoD.
4.   General Singh has proposed changes to the existing MoD systems that put a choke hold on procurement and evaluation, often resulting in the returning of budgets, as well tampering with considered professional military advice, on flimsy and non-professional grounds by MoD bureaucracy or Financial Adviser(s). He has further proposed:
5.    Defense Planning commission, He has also been pushing for a LTIPP – this has been hanging fire for the past 3 years, and procurement has been adhoc, and mired between a difference of perception between the Service HQs and the Financial Adviser.
6.   He has further advocated better Services & DRDO coordination striking at the heart of the politico-bureaucratic complex that is the key to the MoD gravy train.
7.   General VK Singh’s statement of being able to strike within Pakistan did not go down well with the MoD. He has again repeated the same statement at the conclusion of Op. Pine Prahar of the Vajra Strike Corps.
8.   General Singh has further broached the topic of the strategic Kinnaur and Ladakh road as well as the proposed road to build redundancy from the Kargil highway that passes through Jammu & Kashmir. This posturing although correct given the Chinese build-up, and India’s subsequent alarmed efforts in this direction on raising Mountain Divisions and Strike Corps, as well as rapid development of logistics and infrastructure to counter the Chinese threat through the trans Tiber Railway etc. It goes contrary to statements of MEA, NSA’ Menon as well as MoD.
9.   Despite all these provocations and an inimical MoD, he has stuck to his guns. India is lucky to have a 3rd generation officer as CoAS. On his watch and on the strength of his ideas, despite the shenanigans of Saint Anthony as well as the bureaucracy, and the overall Congress led UPA compulsion ad proclivity, I see the lot of the Armed Forces getting better. This will however come at personal cost to him. Let us hope that we don’t see an Admiral Bhagwat sort of situation. This feckless Government is certainly capable of it. 

Update, On 16 January 2012: General VK Singh in an unprecedented move that set the Indian media on fire, took the Congress led UPA Government to court over the date of birth controversy stoked by the MoD: " It is all about honour and integrity, not tenure", said General Singh.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What You Read in Newspapers is what you DONT get! Wonder why what you say has never been raised by the so called investigative journalists.

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