Experts Speak

  • April 13, 2017
    Bullet Resistant Vests
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India has been fighting cross-border proxy wars, terrorism and insurgencies past three decades plus. The requirement of bullet proof jackets (BPJs) for every security forces fighter operating in counter insurgency and counter terrorist...

  • April 13, 2017
    Maoists violence — Far from over
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On March 10, 2017 an article titled 'Is It the End of the Road for Maoists?' appeared in the media. The author post visiting the areas of Jagargunda, Sukma, Dornapal, justified the title of the article on grounds that included...

  • March 14, 2017
    Visit of Bangladesh PM - expectations
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Coming up next month in April is the all important visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh to India.

  • Pakistan — Defiant Frankenstein
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    By admitting that the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack was carried out by Pakistan based terror group but that the Pakistani government had no role in it, former Pakistan National Security Adviser Mahmud Ali Durrani has managed to hit headlines while keeping himself safe.

  • Special Forces — efforts to bridge equipment voids
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Media is agog with news "Army on shopping spree, commandos to get deadlier", reporting that after the successful 'surgical strikes', MoD is fast-tracking some...

  • Military Modernization Kaput — and the curse of committees
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence has slammed the...

  • QCG and the six plus one
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG) comprising the US, China, Afghanistan and Pakistan aimed to bring the Taliban on board to join...

  • Of Grenade Lobbing Robots — and more
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As the battle for Mosul continues, the ISIS fights on with new technology. Tiny surveillance drones are employed to observe and report movement and positions of the attacking forces.

  • Indigenous LCH — good strides
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India's indigenous Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), was a star attraction at the Aero India 2017...

  • Pakistan's Change of Heart — recurring utopia
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    When news came that Qamar Javed Bajwa, the Pakistani army chief had told his officers that they should read how the Indian democracy had succeeded, media at home went gaga as usual, with many utopians forecasting 'change of heart' in Pakistan, little realizing that Bajwa is from the same crop as Zia, Musharraf and Co. And lo and behold, some terror blowback in Pakistan and Bajwa plays...

  • Remov AFSPA — periodic punchline
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    There are frequent calls in insurgency affected areas for removal or dilution of the Armed Forces Special Power Act. Such calls are periodic in J&K and Manipur. It is also a election issue in Manipur this year, particularly by the People's Resurgence and Justice Alliance (PRJA) floated by Chanu Sharmila who has been demanding repealing of AFSPA for past 16 years.

  • India-China Strategic Dialogue — hollowness persists
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On February 22, India and China held their 'upgraded' strategic dialogue at Beijing. Just before the dialogue, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar held talks...

  • Indo-US Defence Ties — retain the high
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    There was some speculation as to how the Indo-US defence relationship would pan out under the new US President, as relationships do undergo change...

  • Policy on Unmanned Vehicles — setting course is good
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    DRDO Director General Dr S Christopher's statement on February 11, 2017 that DRDO plans to soon come out with policy document on unmanned vehicles...

  • Tri-Service Commands — must get them right
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    After a lapse of over a year, news is media is again talking of Tri-Service Commands and other measures like appointing a single-point military adviser...

  • Longer reach Pinaka tested
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In January 2015, Mark-II version of Pinaka rocket system was successfully tested to its full range where it was able to destroy its targets 60km away.

  • Big Stride in Ballistic Missile Defence
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    February, 11, 2017 was a great day for the DRDO and the nation. At precisely 0745 hours, DRDO successfully test-fired a interceptor missile off Odisha coast and achieved a significant milestone for developing a two-layered BMD system...

  • Critical shortages — Where is the money?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Media reports headlining urgent arms deals of Rs 20,000 crores have been signed to keep the Armed Forces "ready" create an impression that all is going to be hunky dory in a jiffy is misnomer.

  • Defence Budget 2017-2018
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence has been allocated Rs 2,74,114 crore ($40.31 billion) for fiscal year 2017-2018. This does not include the pensions bill which itself is close to Rs 85,000 crore per annum.

  • The China factor in Kashmir
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    That China is the central actor behind the problems in J&K is still not fully acknowledged by our policy makers. Not that it is a new development but the understanding remained coloured with the advice of our intelligence agencies who refused to get out of the time wrap.

  • Carbines — Small arms faux passé
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    According to media reports, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has decided to purchase 44,000 close quarter battle (CQB) carbines via direct route and cancel the tender process.

  • Why India should never join CPEC
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Khaled Ahmed, consulting editor, 'Newsweek' Pakistan, in his recent article titled 'Corridor of Uncertainty' writes that Pakistan's General Riaz inviting India...