Gen VK Singh: Army able to launch faster response against Pak - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Thursday 12 January 2012

Gen VK Singh: Army able to launch faster response against Pak

At a press conference in New Delhi today, army chief Gen VK Singh, all but admitted the existence of the "Cold Start" doctrine

By Ajai Shukla
Business Standard, 13th Jan 12

Army chief, General VK Singh, strongly defended the Indian Army’s performance over this last year, brushing off questions about his date of birth. Asserting that the standoff with the defence ministry (MoD) “has not impacted my vision for the army,” the chief highlighted the army’s achievements, mentioning the 8 officers and 57 soldiers who died in counterinsurgency operations last year.

Addressing a press conference in New Delhi in the run-up to Army Day on 15th Jan, Gen Singh declined comment on the ongoing civil-military crisis in Pakistan. He outlined, however, the continuing terror threat from that country, stating: “There are 42 terrorist camps, some in POK (Pakistan Occupied Kashmir) and some in other areas,” which continue to pump in “well-armed, well-trained, foreign and other terrorists” into J&K.

In contrast, Gen Singh was notably diplomatic about China, referring to “friendly relations” that invariably adhered to the 1993 Agreement on Peace and Tranquillity between India and China. He glossed over a recent incident, in which a Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) patrol entered Indian territory on 13th July 11 at Yangtse, near Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, and damaged a 200-foot long wall that Indian soldiers had constructed. Referring to this incident, which Defence Minister AK Antony described in parliament on 21st December, the army chief said, “We consider it a childish act. It is just like scoring a point, like one child coming and taking away another child’s toy.”

Gen Singh came closer than any other government official has to describing the widely speculated Indian warfighting doctrine that is popularly referred to as “Cold Start”. This doctrine learns from Operation Parakram, when the military mobilised for war against Pakistan after the terror strike on the Parliament in New Delhi on 13th Dec 01. After taking weeks to reach its launch pads along the border, India’s military found Pakistan’s forces deployed and ready for battle. The new doctrine allegedly aims at launching attacks without prolonged mobilisation.

“There is nothing like Cold Start. But we have a “proactive strategy” which takes steps in a proactive manner so that we can achieve what our doctrines and strategies [demand],” admitted Gen Singh.

“A lot of changes have taken place since 2001; and in the next two years even more changes will take place. We have done studies and made a plan to speed up deployments. We will have some new cantonments, forward locations… and changes in the method of mobilisation. From Parakram, there are a lot of changes. What we did in 15 days, we now do in 7; and will do in 3 days in the future,” explained the chief.

Asked about India’s military relations with Myanmar, Gen Singh said he aimed at assuaging hurt feelings amongst small regional countries about Indian neglect. “Some small countries think that we don’t take them along [with us]. I wanted to reassure them that we respect them… no matter how small.”


  1. Perhaps "Gen Sahib" needs to access broadsword and check out Chinese tanks manuvering in snow..

    Sadly not much changed since 62..

    Not much changed from wht satyajit ray depicted in shatranj ke khiladi about India..just that this time its cricket and not shatranj where we put all our attention..hopefully chienese wont march on us like brits did in the movie and for real..

  2. Sir,
    Did some one ask COAS about NFFU for def offrs? If yes what was his answer?

  3. Without the requisite rail/air/road infrastructure all this is just a load of gas and nothing else.

  4. Yes It is all posturing. Quality manpower is a problem. India can win no war with just about 10 or 11 officers at Battalion/Regiment level. Military officers donot grow on trees for babus to do a recruitment drive and fill in. When they realize their folly it will be too late.Then who is bothered? As long as Hawala channels operated by Pakis are open there is no problem! The babus,politicians and committed media will ensure India's military remain degraded in all respects!Op parakram was a failure since the then Govt decided that the mobilisation will be like normal training moves.It was not a declared mobilization. So the railways gave little or no priority.Can't blame them. Mr Ajay need not sugar coat and stand for the Govt's follies with his military background.Why this did not happen in our previous wars?

  5. tell him..launching an operation is a different thing and conducting a successful operation is different.with 70% night blind and obsolete weaponry wat he wants to achieve,is our govt is not enough to let this nation down that now army is also joining the bandwagon

  6. On a total side note..could the ongoing tiff in between mod and coas have any conspiratorial underside..there're some nasty rumours about the mod and the government in particular hastening the coas's retirement because of his relatively open enquiry into army's corrupt underhand dealings notably the adarsh scam..what do you think ajai sir..

  7. is there any neighbour of india that likes it?

  8. Pak Army is ready in under 24 hours!!!!

  9. @Anon 3:44:Great! Also consider the size of your nation and the size of your army when as usual you guys compare your country with India, its great that you can mobilise in 24 hrs, but what use is that mobilization when everytime u are thrashed!

  10. @Anon 04:15: Is there anyone in this world who likes Pakistan? not even the countries on whose alms Pakistan sustains its global terrorist machinery like it..

    PS: Are blogs banned in Pakistan that you have come visiting an Indian site..?


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