Experts Speak

  • June 19, 2021
    DAC approves RFP for construction of six submarines
    By Lt. General Naresh Chand (Retd)

    This project envisages indigenous construction of six conventional stealth submarines equipped with the state-of-the-art Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) system, at an estimated cost of 43,000 crore (about $5.8 billion)

  • June 19, 2021
    Pearl in the String
    By Lt. General Naresh Chand (Retd)

    Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan earlier had some misgivings on the economic viability of CPEC and that it represents a debt trap but on May 24, 2021, he met China’s Ambassador to Pakistan and reiterated the highest priority accorded by his government to the CPEC

  • June 6, 2021
    Another Chinese Conquest in Colombo
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    China getting 220 acres on 99 years lease and 49 acres free-hold in Colombo Port City is a massive strategic victory for Beijing

  • June 6, 2021
    New Runway in Mauritius
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    India is fully financing a new three kilometre long runway on the island of North Agalega to develop the Agaléga islands and resolve infrastructural problems faced by the inhabitants

  • May 25, 2021
    Navy’s Utility Helicopter - A Twist in the Tale
    By Lt. General Naresh Chand (Retd)

    By 2025, Indian Navy will be faced with a major capability gap for Naval Utility Helicopters.

  • May 25, 2021
    QUAD – Revisited
    By Lt. General Naresh Chand (Retd)

    The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD) was an informal strategic forum between India, US, Japan and Australia initiated in 2007

  • May 20, 2021
    American Sunset in Afghanistan
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The US war in Afghanistan is the longest in which some 2,312 US military personnel have died since their invasion in 2001

  • May 20, 2021
    Military Officers As Bureaucrats
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Appointment of serving military officers as Additional Secretary and Joint Secretaries in the DMA is not a big deal as is being made out

  • May 20, 2021
    2-DG Drug Helping COVID-19 Patients
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    DRDO affiliated Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences (INMAS) worked in partnership with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories for the clinical trials showing it to be effective in controlling the pandemic

  • May 20, 2021
    Plugging Armed Forces Criticalities
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Armed Forces are looking at leasing more military equipment and platforms from foreign countries to plug critical operational deficiencies

  • May 20, 2021
    India-UK Defence Cooperation
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Modi-Johnson virtual meet and adoption of the India-UK Roadmap to 2030 have opened new vistas for taking the bilateral defence relationship to the next level

  • May 6, 2021
    Did Beijing Trigger Second Virus Wave?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Within India, Delhi (the national capital), Mumbai (the financial capital) and Bengaluru (the IT capital) are most affected. This creates the impression that akin to ‘tactical nukes’ China has developed ‘tactical bio-bombs’

  • May 6, 2021
    Indian Navy Getting MH-60R Seahawks
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The MH-60R helicopters have been selected by the navies of the United States, Denmark, Australia and Saudi Arabia. Indian Navy will be the latest user

  • May 6, 2021
    More Teeth for Indian Navy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The requirement for India is to define its role within its IOR strategy and keep providing more teeth to the Indian Navy in keeping with the expanding threats

  • April 20, 2021
    Quad Exercise with French Navy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The latest edition of 'La Perouse' indicates that the Quad is emerging as the fulcrum of like-minded nations in the Indo-Pacific

  • April 20, 2021
    11th India-China Military Talks
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Unlike the last few rounds of talks, there was no India-China joint statement. This is maybe because China is not for anymore disengagement.

  • April 20, 2021
    India in China’s Cyber Crosshairs
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) has recently stated that China is capable of launching cyber attacks on large amount of Indian systems

  • April 6, 2021
    US Secretary of Defence visit to India
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Austin said elevating the India-US defence relationship is a priority for the Biden administration while describing the partnership as a stronghold of a free and open Indo-Pacific region

  • April 6, 2021
    Korean Defence Minister Suh Wook’s India Visit
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence and security relations between India and Republic of Korea have been on the rise with regular interactions at multiple levels including at ministerial levels

  • March 19, 2021
    First Quad Leaders Summit
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The first ever Quad Leaders Summit did give a new signal to China. But the question is whether the Quad will force China to back off?

  • March 19, 2021
    Missile Tracking Ship
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The 15,000 tonne INS Dhruv is one of the largest warships to be built at an Indian yard and was being built under a confidential programme directly under the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO)

  • March 19, 2021
    AIP and Nuclear Powered Submarines
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) allows a submarine to remain under water for prolonged periods while also making it quieter. This new technology will add to lethality of Indian submarines.

  • March 19, 2021
    Coming - Armed Drones
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    For India, the SeaGuardian drones will be vital as they can be fitted with anti-missile and radar components, enabling their readiness for any military operation

  • March 15, 2021
    QUAD 3.0: Window of Opportunity for India
    By Lt. General Dushyant Singh (Retd)

    In the First QUAD Summit, held on March 12, 2021 Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Japan PM Yoshihide Suga and Australian PM Scott Morrison met through virtual mode and shared their vision for the free and open Indo-Pacific

  • March 8, 2021
    The China-Pakistan Threat
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In an article published in Pakistani Media, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi explained that China will continue to work with Pakistan to strengthen their iron friendship and that relations between the countries have become a strategic asset that both sides cherish

  • March 8, 2021
    Colombo offers WCT to India-Japan
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Reports have emerged that Sri Lanka after reneging from the MOC signed with India and Japan on the East Container Terminal (ECT) has now offered the West Container Terminal (WCT) located on the other side of the jetty to India and Japan

  • March 8, 2021
    Boosting India-Maldives Security Relations
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Government of Maldives has signed a pact with India for enhancing the capability of the MNDF and Maldivian Coast Guard

  • February 19, 2021
    Midflight Missile Interception
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    There is no doubt that midflight missile interception technology is of great strategic significance and once fully developed, China’s midcourse anti-ballistic missile technology could change the balance of power

  • February 19, 2021
    Growing Defence Exports
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    With an aim to increase the current defence exports to $5 billion by 2025, Indian government has drawn an export list covering 85 kinds of equipment encompassing 125 items and 47 sub-systems to boost the defence exports

  • February 9, 2021
    COVID Speed Breaker of Defence Expectations
    By Lt. General Dushyant Singh (Retd)

    Despite India being at No 3 spot globally with only USA and China ahead of it in defence spending, the gap is huge with China. Chinese expenditure was four times that of India. This is likely to convey an impression of weakness to our primary adversary China in the face of recent happenings in Ladakh.

  • February 9, 2021
    Defence Allocation 2021
    By Major General Yash Mor (Retd)

    India spends one of the lowest on defence among the top six economies of the world as a percent of the GDP. At a time when the nation is faced with a war like situation with China in the northern borders, it was expected that the defence spending will get a boost.

  • February 1, 2021
    Defence Budget for FY 2021-2022
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The defence budget for 2021-22 is still less than 2 percent of the Union budget. There were expectations of larger funds to prepare the Armed Forces for a possible conflict with China and a two-front war.

  • February 1, 2021
    GPS Circle Spoofing and Electronic Attacks
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Various events in the recent past have pointed towards GPS disruptions as the cause of the accident. Iran is the first nation to publicly announce it had the ability to spoof GPS signals and appears to have used it to great advantage.

  • January 20, 2021
    America’s Indo-Pacific Plan
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Three documents released in Washington DC during January 2021 are notable. One is the fact sheet covering activity of the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, which leaves little doubt about China’s deceit and disinformation about the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic that has already resulted some two million killed globally and over 10 million infected.

  • January 20, 2021
    Defence Budget 2021-2022
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is scheduled to present the Union Budget for FY2021-2022 on February 1. There are varied suggestions and expectations.

  • January 20, 2021
    Pakistani Subterfuge for FATF
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Ahead of the next plenary of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) scheduled from February 21-26, 2021 in Paris, which may be held virtually, Pakistan is engaged in playing the usual ruse by taking face saving measures against designated terrorist...

  • January 7, 2021
    America’s Tibet Policy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    A new landmark was established in US-China relations when US President Donald Trump signed the Tibetan Policy and Support Act (TPSA) 2020 on December 28, 2020 making it a law. Earlier the TPSA was passed by the US Senate.

  • December 20, 2020
    SMASH 2000 Plus for Navy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh in his annual press briefing on the eve of Navy Day in December 2020 has said that the Navy is procuring SMASH 2000 Plus as anti-drone equipment to protect against attacking drones.

  • December 7, 2020
    India’s Message to SCO
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on November 30 chaired the 19th Session of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Council of Heads of Government held in virtual mode.

  • December 7, 2020
    BrahMos – Time to Go Global
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    BrahMos missile is one of its own kind supersonic missile having a maximum speed of 2.8 Mach (around 3,450 kmph or 2,148 mph) which is difficult to intercept by surface-to-air missiles including because of its immense ability to evade various radars.

  • November 20, 2020
    The Depsang Tangle
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament Subramanian Swamy created quite a flutter on Twitter with his tweet on November 15 that read: “I asked a national security officer how could the Chinese PLA build such an extensive infrastructure in such short period in Depsang.

  • November 20, 2020
    Beyond the ASAT Capability
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Mission ‘Shakti’ executed on March 27, 2019, successfully shooting down a low-earth satellite, demonstrated India’s anti-satellite (ASAT) capabilities. This enabled India to join the elite club of countries having similar capabilities; the US, Russia and China.

  • November 7, 2020
    Indo-US 2+2 Dialogue – New Chapter?
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The third India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue held last month in New Delhi between Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar of India with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defence Mark T. Esper...

  • November 7, 2020
    Defence against Swarm Drones
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Islamic State used multiple drones on many occasions against the US and Iraqi forces engaged in retaking territory seized by them in Iraq. On January 5, 2018, 13 x GPS guided drones launched more than 50 km away attacked the Russian Air and Naval Bases at Khemmiem and Tartus in West Syria respectively.

  • October 20, 2020
    Beijing’s Continued Logjam
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Seventh Corps Commander level India-China talks at Chushul on October 12 remained largely inconclusive as expected. The joint statement as reported in Chinese media had similar diplomatic scripts as earlier saying...

  • October 20, 2020
    The Missile Punch
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In a signal to China, India conducted a slew of missile tests recently. These included the 400-km extended range BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, the Shaurya hypersonic missile, a low skimming subsonic Nirbhay cruise missile, SMART long range torpedoes, and RUDRAM anti-radiation missile.

  • October 1, 2020
    Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence Minister Rajnath Singh released Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP) 2020 on September 28, 2020 which is an improvement on the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016.

  • October 1, 2020
    Boosting Combat Drones Capability
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As China remains hostile with its state media saying China does not recognise the Union Territory of Ladakh, established “illegally” by India, India is going in for boosting its combat drones capabilities.

  • September 5, 2020
    Defence Minister at SCO Meet
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence Minister Rajnath Singh left for a three-day visit to Russia on September 2 for attending the defence ministers meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

  • September 5, 2020
    2020 India-US 2+2 Dialogue
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The 2020 India-US 2+2 formal dialogue between foreign and defence ministries is likely to take place later this month after External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar is back from Russia after attending the SCO foreign ministers meet on September 10.

  • September 5, 2020
    Super Swarm Drones
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    It was reported in these columns that the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has provided ‘Bharat’ surveillance drones’ produces by the Chandigarh-based Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory (TBRL) to the troops engaged in a standoff with China in Eastern Ladakh.

  • August 24, 2020
    Aatmanirbhar Reset 2.0
    By Lt. General R.K. Jagga (Retd)

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a clarion call to use these trying times to become Aatmanirbhar (self-reliant). Defence Manufacturing in India has huge potential and can bring a transformative change, but is the industry ready to rise up to challenges and uncover the opportunities therein.

  • August 24, 2020
    China adopts an aggressive posture against Japan
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey (Retd)

    From the aggressive posture that China has adopted in the region, it is clear that focus of her policy is directed against Japan, her most powerful enemy in the region.

  • August 20, 2020
    Modi-Abe Summit Coming Up
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The India-Japan summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe which got postponed last year is scheduled for early next month, the tentative date for which according to sources is September 10.

  • August 20, 2020
    India’s Infrastructure Push in Maldives
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Located about 600 km off the southwest coast of India and 750 km southwest of Sri Lanka, Maldives consists of a double chain of 26 atolls spread over 90,000 sq km of territory.

  • August 20, 2020
    Make in India Stealth Submarines
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The Chinese aggression in Eastern Ladakh appears to have egged the government in giving impetus to the Indian Navy’s Project 75(I) (P75(I)). Project 75(I)-class submarine is follow-on of the Project 75 Kalvari-class submarine for the Indian Navy.

  • August 20, 2020
    ANI should be Andaman & Nicobar Islands (ANI)
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On August 10, 2020 Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s first undersea fibre optics cable project linking Chennai with Andaman and Nicobar Islands (ANI). The project has been aptly named CANI; Chennai - Andaman and Nicobar.

  • August 7, 2020
    China-Pakistan Collusive Threat
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    News reports of July 22 cited Defence Minister Rajnath Singh having asked the Armed Forces to be prepared to respond at short notice as also build and sustain military capabilities to deter any adversary in the long run.

  • July 29, 2020
    Desperate Quad
    By Lt. General J.K. Sharma (Retd)

    An isolated China attempts fortifying alliances in frustration

  • July 20, 2020
    Lessons from Ladakh Standoff
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The norm we follow is to appoint committees after conflict situations whose reports are either buried like Henderson Brooks report of 1962 or lessons forgotten like of Kargil Review Committee.

  • July 20, 2020
    Landing Platform Docks
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    With increased Chinese footprints in the IOR, amphibious capability assumes importance for India. India Navy’s amphibious capability consists of nine older tank landing ships (LST) of various sizes and capabilities.

  • July 20, 2020
    Chinese Specter on India-Iran Relations
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    According to media reports, Iran has decided to exclude India from the 628 km railroad project that links its port in Chabahar to Zahedan on the Afghanistan border, citing delays by the Indian government in funding and starting the project, and has announced that Iran has decided to construct the railway line on its own.

  • July 6, 2020
    Defence Minister’s Russia Visit
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Defence Minister Rajnath Singh left for a three-day visit to Russia on June 22 for holding discussions with top Russian military brass and to attend Russia’s Victory Parade at the Red Square on June 24 to commemorate 75th Anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945.

  • June 18, 2020
    India China Stand-off in June 2020
    By Air Marshal B.K. Pandey (Retd)

    The nation needs to be concerned about the overall strategic and economic relations with China which have been in turmoil in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • June 18, 2020
    The Galwan Clash
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    The news of “at least” 20 Indian soldiers including a Colonel and at least one JCO clubbed to death by the PLA in Galwan on the night of June 15/16 has shocked the nation. Number of injured reportedly were 17.

  • June 18, 2020
    Indigenous Fighter Jet for Navy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    News reports of June 4 have confirmed that the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) under the Department of Defence Research and Development (DR&D) of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has given the go ahead for the development of a twin engine Made-in-India fighter jet for the Indian Navy.

  • June 18, 2020
    Revisiting ‘One China’ Policy
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    While the PLA is continuing serious monkey tricks in Eastern Ladakh, the Indian Capital witnessed an interesting webinar titled "Revisiting 'One China' Policy" to explore possible options that India can pursue to send strong messages to Beijing.

  • June 18, 2020
    Oli Steering Nepal into China’s Lap
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On June 13, Nepal’s Parliament unanimously passed a new map that shows Lipulekh, Kalapani and Limpiyadhura areas (totaling about 370 sq km) in its territory. Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli took this arbitrary decision without discussing the boundary issue with India.

  • June 6, 2020
    India-Australia Pacts Boost Bonding
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    In a virtual bilateral summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on June 4, India and Australia upgraded...

  • June 6, 2020
    Gwadar Could Mirror PLAN’s Djibouti Base
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Djibouti, in the Horn of Africa, is China’s first overseas military base operated by Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). Built at a cost of $590 million in 2017, it is strategically situated in the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait which separates the Gulf of Aden from the Red Sea and guards the approaches to Suez Canal.

  • May 28, 2020
    New Direction in Defence Production and Procurement
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Delivering the fourth tranche of the economic package in wake of COVID-19 in a press briefing on May 16, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced three major decision related to defence which will have far reaching effect in boosting the defence sector;

  • May 28, 2020
    New Amphibious Warfare Craft Commissioned
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    On May 15, 2020, INLCU-75 another amphibious warfare landing craft entered the Indian Navy at an official ceremony at Port Blair. The Landing Craft Utility (LCU) Mk-IV class vessel was commissioned by Commander-in-Chief Lieutenant General P.S. Rajeshwar.

  • May 28, 2020
    Modernisation of Military Airfields
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    Media reports of May 8, 2020 quoting official sources disclosed that the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has signed a 1,200 crore ($160 million) contract with Indian company Tata Power SED for the second phase of the military infrastructure modernisation programme to cover 37 of the IAF, Indian Navy and Coast Guard airfields.

  • May 10, 2020
    Defence MSMEs
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    As India battles the scourge of COVID-19, the prospects of economic growth have begun to lookbleak. Among various forecasts, Moody is predicting a zero per cent growth.

  • May 10, 2020
    Chinese Marines in Indian Ocean
    By Lt. General P.C. Katoch (Retd)

    News reports of April 18 indicate that within five years Chinese marines will be operational in the Indian Ocean. In September 2019, China launched its largest amphibious ship—the Type 075, which is roughly like US Navy’s 40,000-tonne amphibious ship USS ‘Wasp’, central to three ships carrying an American Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).