Today I am putting up more observations.
One is from a middle-ranking serving Indian military officer. He in fact sent a long note on the subject which is worth examining. as I said, more opinions will mean more debate and more discussion which should be welcomed by everyone.
Here's is his opinion:
Your case for military organisational reforms is well made.
However,the proposed approach (existing Commands to be made 'theatres' headed by four stars etc) appears too radical. In military planning we have a term 'Situating the Appreciation '!
In my view,first and foremost,we need to have a clear political level consensus of what sort of a transformed military organisation we want at the end and then draw a road map to achieve it. There are prominent administrative, legal,operational and financial dimensions to the process. Not sure whether we have a team in place to look at these nuts and bolts.
In the present set-up the respective Chiefs draw their powers from the law of the land, mainly the Army,Air Force and Navy Acts,which gives them administrative and operational powers. A change in their charter will mean changing the law.That will have to be the start point for any lasting change. Without legislative backing no organisational reform will stand the legal test.
Secondly,an incremental,less destabilizing approach could be adopted by making it incumbent on existing Commands(all Services) to dedicate resources for certain category of contingences when called for by the Joint Commander(CDS/Your case for military organisational reforms is well made. However,the proposed approach (existing Commands to be made 'theatres' headed by four stars etc) appears too radical. In military planning we have a term 'Situating the Appreciation '!
Once we achieve confidence in this model of contingency driven joint operations, we could look at integrating structural blocks,viz. Logistics, Financial Managemnt, Military Law etc to usher in more integration. In this manner we could move from enhanced jointness to credible integration over say,a ten year time frame. It has to be a gradual,incremental approach.
Remember,the bottom line for the Govt is economy. All govts which pushed jointness and integration (both are qualitatively different terms) were primarily interested in saving money. Rightsizing, avoiding duplication of expenditure-going for a lean and mean military.
Another reaction came from a reader who despite giving out his name, is unknown to me so will, like others before him, remain unnamed! He says:
Yes we do need integration of Services for Operations. This can be best achieved by reverting to concept of C-in-C as existed in 1947 with proviso that he will be subordinate to the Cabinet through Defence Minister. Service Chiefs be made responsible for Training and Administration. Operational Logistics be responsibility of Theatre Commanders. Civil Wing of MoD be responsible for Inter-ministerial Coordination. Defence PSUs and Ordnance Factories be hived off to Ministry of Industries. DGDE and MES be subsumed in QMG Branch of the Army Headquarters. CDA be answerable to Defence Minister and Service Chiefs for Capital and Revenue parts of budget.
Let's have the observations/reactions/criticism coming.