Ajit Doval Current Affairs

Defence Planning Committee to formulate military, security strategy, supervise foreign deals

The Union Government has formed Defence Planning Committee (DPC), a new integrated institutional mechanism that will drive country’s military and security strategy and guide defence equipment acquisitions. It will be under the chairmanship of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.

Key Facts

The committee will be a permanent body and it will prepare draft national security strategy besides undertaking strategic defence review and formulating international defence engagement strategy.

Composition: It will consist of Chairman Chiefs of the Staff Committee (COSC), service chiefs, Defence Secretary, Foreign Secretary and Secretary (expenditure) in the Finance Ministry.

Structure: The committee will operate through four sub-committees: on Policy and Strategy, Defence Diplomacy, Plans and Capability Development and Defence Manufacturing Ecosystem. The membership and the terms of reference of the sub-committees will be finalized separately. Foreign Secretary and Expenditure Secretary being member of DPC will help to overcome problems of coordination between various ministries on matters of national security.

Functions: DPC has been tasked to undertake external security risk assessment and define national defence and security priorities. It will formulate national military strategy, draft national security strategy and strategic defence review. It will identify means and ways across ministries, obtain Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) approval for capability development plan and provide guidance for budgetary support.

The DPC will also prepare roadmap to build defence manufacturing ecosystem, strategy to boost defence exports and prioritized capability plans for armed forces in consonance with overall priorities, strategies and likely resource flows. It will submit all its reports to defence minister.

Background

Considering the complex security environment and volume of expenditure on national defence, it was imperative to have strong defence planning mechanism. The present system was found insufficient to provide rigour necessary for planning process. So it was mandated to create an institutional mechanism which can undertake comprehensive and integrated planning of higher defence matters.

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India, Pakistan holds NSA level talks in Bangkok

National Security Advisor (NSA) level talks between India and Pakistan were held in Bangkok, Thailand.

It was attended by India’s NSA Ajit Doval and his Pakistani counterpart Naseer Khan Janjua. Foreign secretaries S. Jaishankar (India) and Aziz Ahmad Chaudhary (Pakistan) were also present during the high level meet.

Key facts

  • Both sides in the meeting discussed peace and security, terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir and other issues including tranquility along the Lince of Control.
  • The dialogue mainly covered issues of key interest to both countries including terrorism for India and the Kashmir dispute for Pakistan.
  • They also agreed to carry forward the constructive engagement between both countries.

Background

The NSA level talks come in the backdrop of the recent meeting between Prime ministers of India and Pakistan in Paris, France on the lines of UNFCCC summit. Earlier in September 2015, the planned NSA level talks based on 2015 Ufa declaration between both countries was called off at last moment.

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