Defence Current Affairs - 2019

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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Govt. approves raising of 2 operational commands for ITBP at Chandigarh and Guwahati

Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved a full cadre review for the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP). This has resulted in creation of more than 3,000 new posts and raising of two operational commands for ITBP that guards Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China.

Key Highlights

The decision comes on the eve of ITBP’s 58th Raising Day observed every year on 24 October. The new commands are expected to be in place by 2020 and will help in effective domination and control of LAC that is marred by harsh weather and high-altitude locations.

Union government has cleared an about-1.5-year-old proposal of the force. The cadre review exercise of ITBP has been conducted after 18 years, as the last review was done in 2001.

The review, for Group ‘A’ general duty (executive) cadre and non-general duty officials, will create more than 3,000 new posts, including 60 in top command. It will also allow raising two commands along 3,488-km-long LAC with China that force guards.

Two New Commands: Western command to be based at Chandigarh and Eastern command at Guwahati, Assam. It will be headed by Additional Director General (ADG)-rank officers and will have several frontiers under them that will oversee troops and battalion deployments along China front, starting from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh. This command structure would allow better planning of operations as well as resource mobilisation in times of peace and war.

In 2019, Union government had moved the North West (NW) frontier of ITBP from Chandigarh to Leh for better dominance of front. The frontier is headed by an Inspector General-rank officer who is equivalent to a Major General of Indian Army.

About Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP)

It is one of the seven Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) of India under the authority of Union Ministry of Home Affairs. It was raised in the wake of the Sino-Indian War (1962) on 24 October 1962 under the CRPF Act. It was intended for deployment along India and Tibet border.

Sindhu Sudarshan: Indian Army’s exercise in deserts of Rajasthan

Indian Army to conduct exercise codenamed as ‘Sindhu Sudarshan’ in the deserts of Rajasthan from 29 November to 4 December 2019. More than 40,000 troops will be participating in an all-arms battle array of Divisions and Brigades carrying out offensive operations in deserts. The exercise will showcase a high degree of synergy between the Indian Army and Indian Air Force.

About Exercise ‘Sindhu Sudarshan’

The Exercise underscores Indian Army’s resolve to implement integrated launch of Strike Corps in developed and desert terrain in unison with its clear pro-active strategy using Integrated Battle Groups (IBGs) along the Western Front. The IBGs are the new formations being raised by force for warfighting in future.

The military exercise will witness Indian Army assessing operational efficiency of Strike Corps to fight in desert terrain as well as Indian Air Force (IAF) to provide intimate support in terms of destruction of targets and airlifting troops. It will be conducted to evaluate defence services capabilities to strike deep into enemy territory in an integrated air-land battle.

This will also provide unique opportunity to employ entire mechanised formations consisting of Tanks and Infantry Combat Vehicles (ICV) in order to evaluate capability to strike deep along Western Borders.

The exercise is unique in scope as well as scale. It will simulate battlefield conditions and will focus on fine-tuning destruction and/or surveillance mechanisms to support precision strikes as well as manoeuvres by network-enabled forces.