Experts Speak

  • Terror attack in Nagrota — What beyond?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Pakistan-sponsored terrorists struck at two places in Jammu region of &K on November 29. In two major terror attacks, that rocked Jammu region on Tuesday, seven army personnel, including a Major, were killed and eight other security personnel, including a BSF DIG, were injured, before six heavily-armed terrorists were eliminated in the separate fierce encounters.

  • Finally M777 howitzers through FMS
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    After almost seven years of discussion, trials and choosing, India and the US today inked a nearly Rs 5,000 crore deal for 145 x M777 ultra-light howitzers; India signed the Letter of Acceptance (LoA) on November 30...

  • PM Modi's Japan visit — Historic nuclear deal signed
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Japan on November 11-12 may be termed the most historic as making an exception; Japan has signed a civil-nuclear cooperation deal with India.

  • ISRO: Of Satellites, Moon and Mars
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    It may be recalled that on June 22, 2016, India launched 20 satellites in one go, which was the maximum ever by ISRO.

  • Blacklisting Redefined
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Since December 2014, media was reporting that a new government policy legalizing middlemen in arms purchases, a source of massive controversies...

  • OROP: One-Man Judicial Commission
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Politicization of the unfortunate suicide of Subedar Ram Kishan Grewal was indeed bad. The JCO's suicide note reportedly stated he was taking that drastic action not having been given the benefit of OROP.

  • Internet of Things (IoT) and Dangers in Cyberspace
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Much has been said in recent years about Internet of Things (IoT); it is coming, it has arrived or it is growing rapidly. But the enormity of IoT can be gauged from the one forecast that by 2030 there will be over 26 billion connected devices that would average to about six connected devices per each person on this planet.

  • Xi Jinping — China's "Core Leader"
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Communist Party of China (CPC) has anointed President Xi Jinping as the "Core Leader" of China, which places him on par with Mao Tse Tung and Deng Xiaoping.

  • Visit of Aung San Suu Kyi
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Myanmar Foreign Minister and State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi's four-day visit to India after attending the BRICS summit at Goa provided fresh impetus to India-Myanmar relations.

  • Deriding military — Continues unabated
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The latest attack on the military's ethos came from the MoD through the GoI letter number A/24577/CAO/CP Cell dated October 18, described by a national daily in talking about rank "equivalence" between defence officers and "armed forces headquarters civil service officers".

  • Excalibur — Stopgap or final?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    It was only four months back (July 2016) when media reported that the Army junked DRDO's 5.56mm Excalibur assault rifle. Resultantly, Army's quest for a state-of-the-art assault rifles got been extended.

  • Hand in Hand is Good — But what about Stab in the Back?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Indian and Chinese army troops carried out a joint exercise in Eastern Ladakh on October 19, led by Brigadier R S Raman and Senior Colonel Fan Jun respectively

  • India-Russia relations take next step
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The recent meet between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Putin of Russia on the sidelines of the BRICs summit at Goa and the deals signed between India and Russia have silenced the critics that the Modi Government is putting all its eggs in the basket of America.

  • Surgical strike in cyberspace
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    While the surgical strikes by Indian Special Forces in PoK on September 28 was heating up the digital media both in India in Pakistan, opposition parties baying for proof and Nawaz Sharif in denial till Ghulam Akbar, SP of Mirpur spilled the beans, surgical strikes by Indian hackers were also hitting Pakistan in cyberspace.

  • Big ticket acquisitions — Overshadowing cutting edge again?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As per media reports, the MoD is working towards seeking an annual hike of eight percent in terms of capital expenditure in the next decade...

  • SAARC shuns Pakistan
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Pakistan is blaming India for pulling out from the upcoming South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) meet scheduled to be held in Islamabad in November.

  • Coming up — Israel type border fence
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Post the visit of Home Minister Rajnath Singh to Israel last year and Pakistan's heightened hostility and persistent infiltration attempts, the government appears all set to install an Israel type of fence along our western border.

  • Give more to private sector
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    During the second half of 1980's the Army went in for import of man-portable paratrooping parachutes from South Korea and Poland. Since the imports were done in bulk to make up operational voids there were no elaborate tests within India.

  • New Long Range SAM
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India successfully conducted the second test of the new Indo-Israeli surface to air missile (LRSAM) on September 20 from the launching complex - III of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur-on-sea.

  • Army Design Bureau is good but need to look far beyond
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Setting up of the Army Design Bureau (ADB) in August this year is a good step even though late by few decades.

  • When will our military get its due?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Since 1989 Pakistan has waged an unrelenting asymmetric war on India which we call "Proxy War". We have been dealing with the terrorists sent by Jihadi Tanzims like the Lashkar-e-Toiba or Jaish-e-Mohammed who have their home and hearth in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK).

  • Equipping Units — Slapped by UN this time
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Since 1989 Pakistan has waged an unrelenting asymmetric war on India which we call "Proxy War". We have been dealing with the terrorists sent by Jihadi Tanzims like the Lashkar-e-Toiba or Jaish-e-Mohammed who have their home and hearth in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK).

  • Terrorist State — will Pakistan get the tag?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    September 20 was historical with US Congressman Ted Poe, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Terrorism, and Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, introduced 'H.R.6069, the Pakistan State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act' in the US Congress.

  • Indian Army Launches Surgical Strikes along the Line of Control
    By Lt General V.K. Kapoor (Retd)

    Since 1989 Pakistan has waged an unrelenting asymmetric war on India which we call "Proxy War". We have been dealing with the terrorists sent by Jihadi Tanzims like the Lashkar-e-Toiba or Jaish-e-Mohammed who have their home and hearth in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK).

  • Beyond the Surgical Strike
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey (Retd)

    The Indian Army has now been given a free hand to take appropriate action against the enemy operating across the LoC from PoK.

  • India Responds to Uri Terror Strike
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India executed surgical strikes against multiple terrorist launch pads-cum training camps in four sectors of POK on night September 28-29. Post the Uri terrorist attack, Nawaz Sharif had shed the fake mask of friendship...

  • Uri Attack — Same story, more lethal
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In a well planned and coordinated terrorist attack Pakistan struck the army camp in Uri in the early hours of September 18. 20 soldiers are already reported dead and 32 injured.

  • The Kashmir Imbroglio
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey (Retd)

    The peace and serenity of Uri, a small town on the banks of river Jhelum in the district of Baramulla in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), which is near the Line of Control (LOC), was brutally shattered in the wee hours of the morning of September 18, 2016.

  • Indo-Afghan friendship scales greater heights
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani's recent visit came at a time when Pakistan's exposure as a generator of terrorism has gained momentum. Not only have countries India, Afghanistan and Bangladesh pointed out Pakistan as the crucible of terror, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent statements...

  • Indo-Russian Strategic Partnership — No reset required
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Signing of the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) between India and the US has been a subject of intense debate in the media. Despite it being a logistic exchange agreement a cross section opined...

  • Of Helmets and Bullet Proof Jackets
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    According to media reports, "The Indian Army is still nowhere near getting desperately-needed modern helicopters, howitzers and air defence weapons, or even new assault rifles and carbines, to plug its critical operational deficiencies.

  • The China-Pak Economic Corridor — Problems galore
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Raising the issue of Gilgit-Baltistan in POK being Indian Territory and the Pakistani genocide in Balochistan by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has sent tremors across Pakistan.

  • OROP and 7th CPC - Course correction required
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    It is quite apparent that civil-military relations have reached the lowest ebb with the military sick of being sidelined and continuously denigrated. A high point was the Service Chiefs issuing letters that the 7th CPC will not be implemented till the anomalies pointed out by the military are addressed...

  • Visit of Nepalese PM — Resetting friendly ties
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The recent four day visit of Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda' on invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi commencing September 15 has helped in resetting Indo-Nepalese ties and dispel the unease of the past few months.

  • PM Modi's Vietnam visit
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Prime Minister Modi's visit to Vietnam on September 2-3 was special not only because Vietnam is India's strategic partner and an important pillar of India's Act East Policy, but also because it came at time of mounting tensions...

  • LEMOA, Balochistan and Chinese infirmities
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    A day after India and US signed the LEMOA during Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar's three-day visit to the US commencing August 29...

  • Indo-Myanmar Construct — good signs
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In March this year, Myanmar got a democratically elected government after 57 years of military rule. On March 15, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated U Htin Kyaw on being elected as the first civilian President of Myanmar...

  • Missing Targets — bane of DRDO
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence generally remains in the news in India for valid reasons. It was reported recently that the government procured Rs 76,000 crores of defence equipment during 2015-2016. Of course this figure does not reflect what percentage of equipment deficiency of the forces was met by this expenditure, especially in the critical segment.

  • Strengthening West Asian Ties
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The recent visit to Lebanon, Syria and Iraq from August 17 - 23 by MoS External Affairs MJ Akbar has strengthened India's ties with these countries...

  • Triple whammy for Indian bureaucracy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    If one hallmark of US Secretary of State John Kerry's recent visit to India was targeting Pakistan for exporting terrorism, the second was Kerry lambasting the Indian bureaucracy, the joke circulating on social media being that both...

  • Kerry's Visit: India, US Focus on Pak Terror
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Deliberations during the recent visit by US Secretary of State John Kerry is being hailed for delivering a blunt message to Pakistan, not to distinguish between good and bad terrorists...

  • Signing LEMOA — and RM's US visit
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    During his three-day visit to the US commencing August 29, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, India and US are slated to conclude the logistics...

  • Indo-Nepalese Relations — new phase begins
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal, also known as 'Prachanda', was sworn in as Nepal's 39th Prime Minister on August 4, 2016 after the CPN-Maoists party withdrew support to the Khadga Prasad Oli government.

  • More Chinese Bullying
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In a humorous twist of events China, a country that shows focused intent of all around aggression in a bid to become a Great Power, has warned India against deploying BrahMos cruise in Arunachal Pradesh.

  • Treasure Troves of PSUs — something amiss?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    How many more shocks Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar will suffer at the hands of his bureaucrats, shocking the public in turn is anyone's guess. In March 2015, he made a startling announcement that India was paying the US Department of Defence (DoD) for new weaponry, even though US$ 3 billion...

  • China: self-appointed NSG Policeman caught cheating
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    China, the self proclaimed Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) policeman has been caught, what may be described as with her pants down, violating NSG rules herself.

  • ISIS Threat — don't take it lightly
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Creeping of the radical Wahabi-Salafi culture overtaking the Sufi culture and Kashmiriyat of Srinagar Valley has been a slow but steady affair facilitated by misadministration, corruption, politico-terrorist nexus and intransigence, which lead to the volatile situation of today.

  • RM's Independence Day eve broadcast — just routine
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Raksha Mantri Manohar Parrikar's customary message to the Armed Forces on the eve of the 70th Independence Day was broadcast over All India Radio.

  • Narrowing the Seas: Security Ramifications of the SCS Verdict
    By Bharat Karnad

    There's an aspect of China's seeking to acquire dominance in the South China Sea that the verdict on July 11, 2016, by the International Court of Arbitration at the Hague, did nothing to address and, which difficult military problem...

  • SAARC Home Ministers Meet — Pakistan's prodigal bash
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Turbulence at the recent 7th SAARC Home and Interior Ministers Conference was but expected simply because it was being hosted by Pakistan...

  • DPP — private sector awaits fair share
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    If anyone were to ask whether the Defence Procurement Policy (DPP) has been enunciated, the answer would be yes, but partially.

  • Non Lethal Weapons — and the pellet gun furor
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Home Minister told the Lok Sabha recently that government is appointing a committee to recommend alternative non-lethal weapons (NLWs) and that the committee is to submit its recommendations in two months time.

  • AFSPA — SC ruling reignites debate
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and its removal come up periodically amongst protests and hot debates. The Act, which provides extraordinary powers of force to soldiers deployed in disturbed areas, has long been a bone of contention between human rights activists...

  • Developments in terrorist activities in India
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    If one were to look at developments in terrorist activities in India, it is obvious that one should look at J&K given the current situation. The killing of Burhan Wani was just a trigger but the phenomenon of mobs consistently attacking police stations and indulging in violence and stone throwing hardly transformed overnight.

  • Visit of Japanese Defence Minister boosts ties
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Japanese Defence Minister Gen Nakatani's recent visit to India came post Malabar 2016 held in Western Pacific recently, in which Indian, Japanese and US Navies participated.

  • Burhan Wani killed — ISI stoking fires
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    With the killing of Burhan Wani, Pakistan was waiting to stoke the fires in Kashmir. Most ironically by default or design, the Mehbooba Mufti led J&K government played into the ISI's hands.

  • Dhaka's 26/11 — future portends
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On the night of July 1, 21:20 hours local time, seven terrorists (all Bangladeshi citizens) armed with assault rifles, bombs and a sword attacked the Holey Artisan Bakery-cum-Café in the Gulshan area close to in the diplomatic enclave of Dhaka, Bangladesh firing indiscriminately, lobbing bombs, taking hostages...

  • New MR SAM — beefing air defence
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On June 30, India successfully test-fired a new surface-to-air missile, developed jointly with Israel, from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur, of the Odisha coast. Apart from the missile, the system includes a Multi-Functional Surveillance and Threat Alert Radar (MF STAR) for detection, tracking and guidance of the missile.

  • DCN Unveiled — but how to Talk?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence Minister Mohan Parrikar dedicated the Defence Communication Network (DCN) to the nation on July 1, 2016.

  • Excalibur Dumped — Army's assault rifle hunt goes on
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As per media reports, the Army has junked DRDO's 5.56mm Excalibur assault rifle. Resultantly, Army's quest for a state-of-the-art assault rifles...

  • K9 Vajra-T: maiden private sector artillery
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    K9 Vajra-T is an indigenized version of the Samsung mobile howitzer, which is the maiden artillery gun venture of India's private sector.

  • 100% FDI in Defence is good move
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Government has announced that FDI in the Defence Sector is permitted to 100% level. Till now, the FDI regime permitted 49% FDI participation in the equity of a company under automatic route.