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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Modi Must Realize that a Nation’s Standing in world polity rests on its Military Power


Narendra Modi is the Prime minister of India and after decades we have a young and fit man to lead India. Compared to the earlier leaders he is just 64. But his comparative youthfulness must be channelized properly by him. He must remember a nation’s standing in the world polity of nations rests solely on its military strength and its capability to wage a war far away from home. Unless this dawns on Modi, there is every chance that he will fall into the abyss of Nehruvian concepts and lead India to look like an old and sick tiger.
Modi has to change his priorities. Firstly to establish his ascendency over the military he must slowly but surely restore the old parity of the military vis a vis the civil authority. The order of protocol will need to be rewritten. A major should again be equated to and Superintendent of Police and all ranks structured accordingly. This will restore morale now reeling down wards, up again. The perks of office, which existed during the days of the Raj need to be restored. A simple example is the use of Form D for rail travel. This allows an officer to travel by the appropriate class by paying 60% of the fare. Earlier there was no limit on this concession, but now it is reduced to just 3 sets in a calendar year. It is important to expand the armed forces. Budget constraints cannot be cited to put expansions on a back burner. A strategic appreciation of the capability of China and Pakistan must be the only overriding factor to decide on an optimum force level to fight China or Pakistan or both combined. Never forget that China can throw 30 divisions for combat at a go.
Equipment must be procured for the creation of strike corps to face China. The defensive strategy needs to be replaced by plans to free Tibet in the long run. The Tibetans are looking to India for intervention for over a 100 years and the first man who let them down was Nehru. Despite the home minister wanting an Indian response to China ‘s invasion of Tibet in 1950, Nehru just watched. The Indian military policy must be pro-active and not reactive. Foreign policy also needs a re-vamp and active support to Baluchis and Sind separatists is the need of the hour. Not forgetting the Tibetan people who are ready to fight the Chinese. The Indian army has a great record of fighting along with Germans and japan as well as subdueing the enemy in China( boxer rebellion) and other places.
In the same breath I will add, that morale boosting measures like OROP, must be sanctioned at once. Money can never be a constraint in case India is to be recognized as a great power. All this cannot be done by Modi alone, but the General staff which has shown no mettle or strength of character must get its act together. We cannot have another case of an Army Chief accepting orders from a Joint Secretary like General Thapar.