SOURCE: The Telegraph

The 2019 general elections have been won by Narendra Modi but in a different strategic context. In 2014, Modi’s campaign relied primarily on domestic issues. But in 2019, Modi won the battle by emphasizing on national security. The broader strategic challenges India is likely to face in the near future would be maritime and not continental. This needs consideration.

China’s naval modernization and the emergence of a coalition in maritime countries like Japan, Australia, the United States of America and India under the umbrella of the Indo-Pacific show that conflict and competition in Asia are turning towards the sea. How India responds to these shifts and challenges will be significant not only for the Indian navy but also for India as it claims to be a stakeholder in Asia. Continue reading


India’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) has approved the procurement of 10 more Boeing P-8I Neptune advanced maritime patrol/anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft for the Indian Navy, according to media reports.

MoD’s Services Capital Acquisition Plan Categorization Higher Committee greenlit the acquisition of the additional P-8I aircraft for an estimated $3 billion, official sources told IHS Jane’s on June 24. The approval reportedly took place in mid-June. The aircraft themselves will be directly bought from Boeing while the P-8I weaponry, radar, and related equipment will be procured via the U.S. Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. Continue reading


An audio which is set to widen the chasm between terror organisations operating in Kashmir has been released by Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind, an Al-Qaeda cell in Jammu and Kashmir. The eight-minute audio, which seems to be a note exchanged between the two most wanted terrorists in the state who have been eliminated in separate operations, slams Pakistan’s ISI-backed groups for collecting donations in the name of ‘Jihad’ for Kashmir.

The audio has been released through Ansar’s media arm, ‘Al Sindh Media’. The second part of the conversation, purportedly between Abu Dujana, a former Lashkar commander who became an Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind terrorist, and the group’s founder Zakir Musa, gives details on how pro-Pakistan terrorists were hounding those who abandoned Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in the region. One of these operatives is Abu Dujana, who switched from Lashkar to Ansar after an ideological rift with the group. Continue reading


The government will take all precautions to ensure the country’s military preparedness is not compromised in any way because of lack of funds or other factors, and attached the “highest priority” to “sufficiently” equip the armed forces to meet any operational requirement, defence minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday.

Replying to questions on “under-utilisation of defence budgets” in Rajya Sabha, Singh said the NDA government had ensured the defence ministry fully utilised allocated budgets over the last three years. “We have utilised more than 100% of what was allocated. There are no procedural delays in purchase of weapons, and substantial financial powers have been delegated to the three Service headquarters,” he added. Continue reading


As the bail pea of Nishant Agarwal, the tainted engineer at Brahmos Aerospace Private Limited’s (BAPL) unit at Butibori was adjourned for the second time on Tuesday, papers submitted by Anti-Terror Squad in the court have laid bare a casual approach towards security by the DRDO officers.

It was found that in one of the DRDO labs, officers of Group A scientists’ rank and also the director had formed a WhatsApp group in which sensitive information was shared. The then DRDO chairman Sanjay Mitra, had cited this instance in a letter issued to all labs under the agency, expressing concern over violation of social media norms. The letter was issued on August 23, 2018 and Agarwal was arrested on October 8, 2018. Continue reading


A decades-old legal dispute between India and Pakistan over around 35 million pounds belonging to the Nizam of Hyderabad at the time of Partition in 1947 and deposited in a London bank account has reached an important stage in the UK High Court. The Nizam’s descendants, Prince Mukarram Jah – the titular eighth Nizam of Hyderabad – and his younger brother Muffakham Jah, have joined hands with the Indian government in the legal battle against the Pakistan government over the funds lying with NatWest Bank plc in London.

The dispute revolves around 1,007,940 pounds and nine shillings that were transferred in 1948 from the then Nizam of Hyderabad to the high commissioner in Britain of the newly-formed Pakistan. Continue reading


Ahead of the strategically-important India-US talks, diplomatic sources on Tuesday said India meets the US waiver criteria for procuring the S-400 missile defence system from sanctions-hit Russia, and asserted that New Delhi cannot “wish away” its defence ties with Moscow.

Besides India’s missile defence system deal with Russia, terrorism, H-1B visas, trade and the situation arising out of US sanctions on buying oil from Iran, are likely to be discussed on Wednesday during the talks between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his US counterpart Mike Pompeo, who arrived here late Tuesday evening. Continue reading


India on Wednesday called on Iran and the United States to de-escalate their tensions, amid strained bilateral ties between them, diplomatic sources said on Tuesday.

“India is concerned about the situation because of the huge diaspora (living in the region). India wants the situation to de-escalate and will urge Iran and US to de-escalate,” they said. On June 20, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) downed an “intruding American spy drone” — RQ-4 Global Hawk — after it violated Iranian airspace over the southern coastal province of Hormozgan. The US has labelled it as an “unprovoked attack,” claiming that the drone was flying over international waters when it was attacked. Continue reading


A special task force (STF) of Kolkata police has arrested four suspected militants affiliated to a Bangladesh-based terror outfit near the Sealdah and Howrah railway stations, according to a statement released by the police on Tuesday.

While three of them are Bangladeshi nationals, one is from West Bengal’s Birbhum district, the police said.The four are “members of the neo-Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen/Islamic State, a banned terror outfit,” the STF said in the statement, adding, “They took shelter in India to escape arrest in Bangladesh”. Continue reading


About 500 employees of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited went on an indefinite relay hunger strike from today, demanding settlement of wages and also salaries on par with other public sector undertakings.”We have not got our wages settled since 2017. We are on a relay hunger strike for an indefinite period. Its throughout the nine units across seven states,” chief convenor of all the unions Suryadevara Chandrasekhar told news agency PTI.

The union leader said the management was not coming forward for wage settlement on par with what the executives got. “Their (executives) settlement happened in November 2017. Our negotiations continued but it wasn’t fruitful. Hence, the deadlock,” he said. Continue reading


               Picture of ‘Faulty’ MiG-29s returned by Algeria .

Mig-29s are been in news in India off lately after Moscow pitched its excessive MiG-29 Fulcrum aircraft to India and according to multiple local media reports, aircraft on offer range from 21 to 50. According to multiple reports, at least 21 Mig-29 on offer are still in a basic fuselage stage which was in storage all these years in Mikoyan factory outlet and if approved will be getting full internals, new engines, avionics, and Zhuk-ME Radar, engine, weapon control systems at par with Indian MiG-29UPG standard already in use by IAF.

The second lot of 13 Mig-29s offered to India in addition to the 21 basic air frames slated above reportedly were manufactured in 2008 and it is believed by many in India that it was part of the Algerian MiG-export fiasco which was supplied in 2007 and returned by the customer in 2008 after Algeria complained that 15 supplied MiG-29 SMT air superiority jet fighters were of “inferior quality.” Continue reading


The government is examining recommendations by top two advisory bodies to move public sector units out of the supervision of the defence ministry, pointing out that there is an inherent conflict of interest that prevents full unlocking of the ‘Make in India’ initiative.

While defence PSUs are fairly autonomous, they come under the authority of the Department of Defence Production and there have been frequent complaints that they are given undue preference by the ministry for large orders.Both the Niti Aayog, which advises the government on economic policy, and the National Security Advisory Board (NSAB), which is tasked with special projects by the top echelons of the government, have recommended a restructuring of the defence ministry to promote Make in India. Continue reading


Even as the US has reiterated its reservations about Turkey and India’s purchase of the S-400 missile system, Indian and Pakistani military experts believe that it was the best available air defence system in the world.

They maintained that American alternatives at present were no match to this tested Russian system.Former deputy chief of Indian Air Force (IAF) Kapil Kak and ex-director general of Pakistan’s powerful Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Gen Ehsanul Haq told Anadolu Agency that the US attempts to foist its interests on sovereign countries, would prove counterproductive. Continue reading


India ahead of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit received a boost from Turkey’s assertion on Monday that Ankara will go ahead with purchase of S-400 missile defence systems from Russia notwithstanding American threat of sanctions. “No matter what sanctions decision, no matter which statement comes from the U.S., we have already bought the S-400,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters in Ankara on Monday on the sidelines of a bilateral meeting with his Rwandan counterpart.

“Now we are talking about when the S-400 will be delivered to Turkey. It is not possible for us to give up on the purchase of the S-400,” he added.Ahead of Pompeo visit, US has tried to dissuade India from purchasing S-400 system despite Indo-Russian bilateral deal was signed last year. Continue reading


The capabilities of the Rafale fighter jet are twice that of the Mirage 2000 warplane, Air Marshal R Nambiar, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Air Command, said on Monday.”Rafale offers a wide variety of capabilities something which is double than what Mirage 2000 can do. We will be supreme in the sky when Rafale comes to our theatre. We will have air dominance or maybe air supremacy in this side of the world,” he told ANI here.

The first of the 36 Rafale aircraft India is buying from France is expected to be handed over to the Indian Air Force in September this year. Nambiar, who flew Mirage 2000 sorties during the Kargil conflict, said, “I have a great sense of achievement that Kargil happened and the way it turned out finally…At the beginning of the Kargil war, the IAF lost two fighter aircraft and one helicopter. Our morale was in the dumps. Looking back at history I am elated and delighted that it turned out so well.” Continue reading