By Sangeeta Saxena
New Delhi. 30 December 2019. The wait is finally over. Post an afternoon and an evening of confirmations and announcements from media on the name of General Bipin Rawat as India’s first CDS, ADGPI-Indian Army has officially tweeted that yes the decision on the COAS’s future is confirmed. He is going to be first Chief of Defence Staff. It definitely laid a lot of minds to rest.
Chief of the Defence Staff shall pursue greater coordination amongst the three Services and ensure unison in employment of military power in line with the dynamic security requirement is the tweet which qualifies the basic announcement.
General Bipin Rawat took over the reigns of the fourth largest Army of the world, as the 27th Chief of the Army Staff on 31 December 2016 and little did he know then that after three years when his time to hang the uniform comes, the government will have plans to make him the first CDS of the nation.
In an interview to ADU earlier he had stated , ” tri-services synergy is an imperative to execute effect based operations. The armed forces accrue synergy in capability augmentation by joint planning and prioritisation of future procurements. We train jointly at bi-services as well as tri-services levels. This includes joint courses at various levels, war-games and exercises with troops. Infusion of jointness in our doctrines accrues from the joint and collegiate evolution process. Our operational and tactical concepts do undergo periodic revision to remain current and congruent to aggregated employment philosophy of our individual services capabilities.”
As the Permanent Chairman of Chiefs of Staff Committee, CDS will administer tri-services organisations. Tri-Service institutions related to Cyber and Space will be under the command of the CDS and he will also function as the Military Adviser to the Nuclear Command Authority. CDS will be member of Defence Acquisition Council chaired by Defence Minister and Defence Planning Committee chaired by NSA.
He will bring about jointness in operation, logistics, transport, training, support services, communications, repairs and maintenance, etc of the three Services, within three years of the first CDS assuming office.
He will also ensure optimal utilisation of infrastructure and rationalise it through jointness among the services. He will be responsible to implement Five-Year Defence Capital Acquisition Plan (DCAP), and Two-Year roll-on Annual Acquisition Plans (AAP), as a follow up of Integrated Capability Development Plan (ICDP). Assign inter-Services prioritisation to capital acquisition proposals based on the anticipated budget.
As CDS he will bring about reforms in the functioning of three Services aimed at augmenting combat capabilities of the Armed Forces by reducing wasteful expenditure. It is expected that this reform in the Higher Defence Management would enable the Armed Forces to implement coordinated defence doctrines and procedures and go a long way in fostering jointmanship among the three Services. The country would be benefitted by coordinated action on greater jointmanship in training, logistics and operations as well as for prioritisation of procurements.
It is expected that this reform in the Higher Defence Management would enable the Armed Forces to implement coordinated defence doctrines and procedures and go a long way in fostering jointmanship among the three Services. The country would be benefitted by coordinated action on greater jointmanship in training, logistics and operations as well as for prioritisation of procurements.
It may be recalled that Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 15th August 2019, in his address to the nation from the ramparts of Red Fort said, “India should not have a fragmented approach. Our entire military power will have to work in unison and move forward. All the three (Services) should move simultaneously at the same pace. There should be good coordination and it should be relevant to the hope and aspirations of our people. It should be in line with the changing war and security environment with the world. After formation of this post (CDS), all the three forces will get effective leadership at the top level.”
As Chief of Defence Staff General Rawat will also head the Department of Military Affairs (DMA), to be created within the Ministry of Defence and function as its Secretary.
When the decade comes to an end tomorrow there will be a new dawn for Indian armed forces. Twenty years after it was first officially suggested in 1999 following the Kargil War through the recommendations of the Kargil Review Committee, CDS has now become a reality . It is not only a new chapter in Indian military history but also a dawn of a new era in military management in India.