Monday, January 18, 2016

The Morale and Indian Military is at a Low Ebb 57


Narendra Modi appears to be doing all the right things on the world stage. He is now on his second  visit to the USA and has also interacted with the American president for a record 3 times. But I have a feeling that he is missing the wood for the trees. He like Nehru is unaware that economic power and world standing in the comity of nations depends a lot on military projection of power. One has only to see how China is forging ahead by positioning an aircraft carrier off the coast of Syria along with Russia. It is also building airfields on small islands in the China sea as well as letting their submarines roam in the Indian Ocean. It is in a strategic partnership with Pakistan and Russia as well. The crucial factor is morale, which appears to be high of the Chinese army. Morale is the single factor that propels an army forward, be it the US armed forces or Russia.
In contrast the Indian leadership from the time of Nehru is playing with the morale of the armed forces and as things stand, my information from sources is that morale of the Indian army and other services is ebbing. The one single factor that has affected this morale is non approval of One Rank One Pension in the concept as agreed by 2 parliaments and the Koshiari Commission appointed by parliament. This has led to an agitation, which is still going on. It is sad that the ex servicemen have to resort to this agitation to secure a legitimate demand.  Can one think of any nation in the world where such an agitation by ex soldiers  goes on for months and the government sits like the Sphinx ?
I hope readers will understand that morale is a quality that is ingrained in a fighting man. Also bear in mind that serving soldiers have a umbilical cord with the retired personnel and when they see their peers agitating its bound to affect the fighting man.  You cannot have an army  or air force fighting at its peak efficacy when their seniors are sitting and asking for what is already accepted. 
The governmnet under pressure from the RSS did sanction OROP, but it was a hollow action and the essence of what OROP needed to be approved was negated. One cannot understand how anyone can not understand that morale is very very important and by not sanctiong OROP and allowing the agitation to go on for almost 90 days does no credit to Modi. I wonder if he realises the damage that this agitation is inflicting not only on the armed forces but on india's standing in the world as a military power.
I have just returned froma conference in Chicage and I am pained to inform the readers that most men in uniform in the USA were aghast as to how a government  cannot grant a legitimate demand. The effect outside is bad and our enemies like China and Paksitan will be rubbing their hands with glee. Modi has committed a cardinal blunder and like Nehru may have to pay a terribl price. You cannot build a castle on sand and economic progress sans military power which is related to morale has no meaning.