Defence Current Affairs - 2020

Defence Current Affairs of 2018-19 related to India’s Defence, Indian Armed Forces, Defence Production, Defence Acquisition and related matters for SSC, States Civils, UPSC and Other Competitive Examinations.

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India to get its First Chief of Defence Staff

The Cabinet Committee On Security (CCS) chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the creation of a Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) post that will function as a single point of contact for different branches of armed forces. CCS also approved the report of a high-level committee headed by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, which finalised responsibilities and framework for operation of CDS.

In the present structure, the Chairman of Chiefs of Staff Committee (CSC) is Chief of Army Staff (CoAS) Bipin Rawat. However, he does not function in capacity of a CDS.

About Chief of Defence Staff (CDS)

A CDS would be a four-star general- from either of the Indian Armed Forces- the Army, the Air Force or the Navy and will be payable to a salary equal to a service chief. The CDS post will have a fixed term, that is yet to be determined. [All five permanent members (P-5 nations) of United Nations Security Council (UNSC)- have equivalent posts].

Role of CDS: Chief of Defence Staff, described as ‘first among equals’ among service chiefs, will be tasked with trimming weapons procurement procedures and integrating operation of Indian armed forces- Army, Air Force, Navy. CDA will act as a military adviser to Government of India and will also head Department of Military Affairs. CDS would also be a single-point military advisor whose advice would be binding on service chiefs of Army, Air Force, Navy and who would have authority to direct them, along with authority to create theatre commands as and when needed.

Background

To further sharpen coordination between forces and to make forces even more effective, the Chief of Defence Staff – CDS position was announced by PM Modi during his Independence Day speech on 15 August 2019 year. The concept was also strongly backed by late Manohar Parrikar, who was Defence Minister for two years during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s first term. However, a CDS to oversee military was first recommended by the Kargil Review Committee– a committee set up after Kargil War (1999), to examine lapses in security after war, in which Pakistani soldiers infiltrated into India, occupied key positions in Kargil mountains and triggered the war.

Other Committees: Government’s approval to CDS post that will strengthen India’s collective defence capabilities, also comes after considering-

  • Naresh Chandra Committee Report– ‘Report of Task Force on National Security’
  • General Shekatkar Committee Report– ‘Committee of Experts on Enhancing Capability and Rebalance Defence Expenditure’, chalked out a strategy for higher defence management.

Major Anoop Mishra awarded Army Design Bureau Excellence Award

Indian Army Chief Gen. Bipin Rawat felicitated Major Anoop Mishra with prestigious Army Design Bureau (ADB) Excellence Award for indigenously developing ‘Sarvatra Kavach’, a bulletproof jacket that can provide protection against various ammunition including that from sniper steel bullets. Maj. Anoop is presently posted as Instructor at College of Military Engineering, Pune and was among the four awardees felicitated by Gen. Rawat.

About Army Technology Seminar (ARTECH)

The awards were conferred at Army Technology Seminar (ARTECH) held on 23 December 2019 at Manekshaw Centre, New Delhi. It was organized by Army Design Bureau (ADB), Indian Army jointly with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM). ARTECH was based on theme: Technologies for Non – Contact Warfare’.

About Sarvatra Kawach

Background: In 2014, Army Major Anoop Mishra was hit by a bullet while serving in Kashmir valley. Luckily, the bullet hit his armour plate and he was saved but following the deep trauma which he went through, he decided to work on developing an armour that can withstand hits from all kinds of ammunition which further led to making of ‘Sarvatra Kawach’.

The suit was named ‘Sarvatra Kawach’, as it provides protection from neck to ankle and upper arms. The project was sanctioned in June 2017, however, initially the design and development of a Level IIIA soft body armour suit was sanctioned but it was subsequently revised to include a Level IV hard armour panel inserts.

About Army Design Bureau (ADB)

The ADB was set up to work together with industry and academia and develop indigenous solutions for the Indian Army. ADB is also responsible for spearheading Make in India initiative. Its role is to be the facilitator for Research & Development (R&D) efforts and initiation of Procurements of Weapons and Equipment required by Indian Army.