SOURCE: Republic TV

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman Kailasavadivoo Sivan expressed confidence that young Indian scientists can develop technologies that can beat China in the space race and maintained that India has shown, it is second to none. Speaking to Republic TV’s editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami on his show – Nation Wants to Know, the acclaimed scientist said, “I’m sure that may be in the future, in some technologies, we will be able to beat China. Our youngsters are definitely capable of developing such technology. We always show that we are second to none. We can always make our India, technologically more powerful and I’m sure our youngsters will do the job.”

Space is vast, so are opportunities: K Sivan Maintaining that the lucrative space sector has a lot of opportunities for new-age entrepreneurs to exploit, K Sivan held that India’s young will work hard to make the country a tech powerhouse in the world. Continue reading

SOURCE: The Telegraph

Last week, when the Indian foreign policy establishment was busy handling the aftermath of the face-off with China on the northern frontier, a meeting took place in Dhaka, which sources in both Delhi and the Bangladesh capital think has the potential to change the status quo across India’s eastern border.

On July 1, Imran Ahmad Siddiqui, Pakistan’s high commissioner in Dhaka, met Bangladesh foreign minister A.K. Abdul Momen in the fortified foreign ministry office at Segunbagicha in the Bangladesh capital. Such a meeting would be treated as routine but not when the two countries involved are Pakistan and Bangladesh. The wounds of 1971 and its lead-up are still raw and the two have shared frosty ties since the erstwhile East Pakistan broke away and became an independent nation following a nine-month war in which India stood by the freedom fighters. Continue reading


The MiG-21 fighter first entered service with the Indian Air Force in 1963. Over the years, the MiG-21 faced flak for its high accident rate, but its reputation arguably got a boost in February 2019 when the Indian Air Force claimed to have used the aircraft to shoot down a Pakistani F-16.

The dogfight over Kashmir reignited interest in the MiG-21 worldwide. The MiG-21 was flown by the Soviet Union for the first time in 1955. More than 10,000 MiG-21 jets have been built, making it the most widely manufactured supersonic fighter to date. Now, a popular aviation museum in New South Wales, Australia, is planning to put a MiG-21 on display, along with a French-designed aircraft that was considered its rival in the Cold War era. The Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) Aviation Museum is about 90km from Sydney. HARS has announced it would be displaying a MiG-21 alongside a French-designed Mirage-III fighter, which was retired from the Royal Australian Air Force. The MiG-21 and Mirage-III would be on display from Friday to Sunday. Continue reading


A reform prerequisite for India to become “atmanirbhar” in the field of weapons production has been put on anvil within a week of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Mann ki Baat” of 28 June. The government on 6 July sought bids for the selection of a consultancy service agency, which will assist the Department of Defence Production in the corporatisation of the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB).

This was a major reform announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on the third day of her marathon five-day press interaction in mid-May. She had stated that OFB will be corporatized and envisaged that one or more entities, which will be PSUs listed on the stock exchanges, will be set up, which will be tasked with speeding up the “Make in India” process and be part of the Prime Minister’s “vocal about local” campaign. Continue reading


The Quadrilateral Alliance (Quad) of the United States, India, Japan and Australia forms the bulwark of a free and open Indo-Pacific. As evidence mounts of SARS-CoV-2 likely being a lab-escaped, gain-of-function researched coronavirus, calls to hold China accountable are rising, with the smouldering tensions in the US correlated with the election campaign likely to lead to withdrawal of sovereign immunities that China currently enjoys in US courts. Legislation is pending to amend Title 28 of the United States Code to permit US courts to have jurisdiction over cases seeking damages from China.

The bill written by US Senator Josh Hawley, with vociferous support from US Senator Tom Cotton and many others, cites death, injury and economic harm due to China’s alleged deliberate concealment and distortion of information about the international public health emergency, and abuses committed against whistleblowers like Dr Li Wenliang. The mood of the US Congress is such that it is not unthinkable for this action to be taken, which would lead to compensatory and punitive damages running into the trillions of dollars potentially awarded by US Courts as much of the world joins with America’s vast legal establishment in lawsuits to sue China. Continue reading


India’s government has petitioned a state court to stop any of the Chinese companies whose 59 apps it recently banned from obtaining an injunction to block the order, according to two sources and the legal filing. India last month outlawed dozens of Chinese apps including ByteDance’s popular video-sharing app TikTok, Alibaba’s UC Browser and Tencent’s messaging app WeChat, saying they posed a “threat to sovereignty and integrity”.

Chinese firms have faced hostility since a border clash that killed 20 Indian soldiers, with Delhi intensifying scrutiny of Chinese imports and any funding from China. Two sources with direct knowledge of the filing said the government had presented a so-called caveat in the High Court of the western state of Rajasthan, suggesting it expects one or more of the companies to challenge the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology’s ban. Continue reading


There is finally some good news in Eastern Ladakh with the mutual disengagement of Indian and Chinese soldiers from the areas of Galwan and Hot Springs. The contentious areas of Pangong Tso and Depsang are yet to be addressed, but with the stalemate along the border having been broken, the differences between the two sides can be narrowed.

Irrespective of how the current crisis plays out, it carries one major lesson. Our strategic differences with China will come into sharper focus as China grows more powerful and assertive, and this competition could increasingly play out along the unsettled Line of Actual Control (LAC). The brutality of the clash at Galwan on June 15 has demolished the existing protocols and agreements that guided the conduct of soldiers, and we could see a hotter LAC in the coming years. Continue reading


The Chinese have been quick to reinforce their troops in Aksai Chin facing India’s XIV Corps. Some of these additional forces had come in earlier as part of the pre-planned push to secure Indian territory. Reserves have been inducted to counter Indian deployment aimed at undertaking offensive operations. What did the Chinese have in the area for border management before launching Operation Land-Grab and what have they added? According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, London, before the start of the confrontation, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) had three border-defence companies based close to the areas in question in Aksai Chin.

Two were drawn from the 362nd Border Defence Regiment one being located at the 19th century Khurnak Fort on the north bank of the Pangong Tso and the other at the Spanggur Tso to the south. The third is located at the Kongka La Pass near the Indian post at Gogra/Hot Springs, and belongs to the 363rd Border Defence Regiment. All these sub-units patrolled the LAC running into Indian patrols and were used to make the initial intrusions. Continue reading


Intelligence inputs have disclosed that terrorists could be trying to enter Jammu and Kashmir from Pakistan to carry out “action”. Following this, security forces along the India-Pakistan border have been put on high alert, reported news agency ANI on Saturday. “There is likely presence of armed terrorists in Bhimber Gali and Naushera sectors with an intention to infiltrate to carry out BAT (Border Action Team) action,” said the inputs, which sources in intelligence agencies said have been shared with the armed forces and the Border Security Force (BSF).

Pakistan’s BAT consists of its army commandos and terrorists from outfits such as Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar-e-Taiba. Continue reading


The disengagement and de-escalation process between Indian and Chinese troops along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) is a “work in progress”, external affairs minister S Jaishankar said on Saturday. Jaishankar’s remarks, made during an appearance on India Global Week, a three-day virtual event organised by a UK-based media house, reflected the differences that persist between the two sides despite the decision made by them almost a week ago to pull back troops from key friction points along the LAC.

Asked by the moderator of the event about the border standoff with China, Jaishankar said: “What’s just happened is that we have agreed on the need to disengage because the troops on both sides are deployed very close to each other. Continue reading


Chinese military further thinned down its presence in the ridgeline of Finger Four and removed some boats from Pangong lake in eastern Ladakh ahead of another round of Lt General-level talks between India and China aimed at finalising modalities for complete disengagement along the Line of Actual Control(LAC), people familiar with the development said on Saturday.

The escalation in tension in eastern Ladakh was triggered by a violent clash between the two armies in Pangong Tso on May 5 in which a sizeable number of personnel from both sides were injured. Following the incident, both sides were locked in an eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation in three other locations in the region. Continue reading


In what is being read as a strong impetus to its ties with Taiwan amid the border tensions with China, India has chosen a senior diplomat handling Indo-US relations as its new envoy to Taipei.The Sunday Express has learnt that Gourangalal Das, currently Joint Secretary (Americas) in the Ministry of External Affairs, will be the next envoy to Taiwan.

A formal announcement on the appointment is expected soon. This comes at a time when there are calls within the strategic community for upgradation of New Delhi-Taipei ties. China and the US have also been sparring over Taiwan and the South China Sea.India does not have formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan because of its One-China policy. It has an office in Taipei to carry out diplomatic functions. It operates under the name of India-Taipei Association, and Das will be its new Director General. He will replace Sridharan Madhusudhanan, also a career diplomat. Continue reading


Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh recently spoke to Jeong Kyeong-Doo, Minister of National Defence, Republic of Korea, over phone yesterday. During the conversation, the ministers reviewed the progress on various bilateral defence cooperation initiatives and expressed commitment to further promote defence cooperation engagements between the two armed forces. Doo urged Singh to conclude the deal for the South Korean made K-30 Biho anti-aircraft system which Indian Army had selected in 2018.

The contract has been stuck after Russia filed objections and claimed the Indian Army did not properly test its weapon system and showed favoritism towards the South Korean anti-aircraft system, Hence requested to re-start the bidding process. According to media reports, two separate systems offered by Russia included upgraded Tunguska M1 and Pantsir missile systems which both failed tests, with the most critical being mobility trials where they could not perform as per the requirements. Continue reading


BrahMos, a joint venture between India’s DRDO and Russian NPO Mashinostroyeniya reached another milestone when its Air Launched version was given ‘Fleet Release Clearance (FRC)’ by the Centre for Military Airworthiness & Certification (CEMILAC) on 10 June 2020 through video conferencing. The conference was attended by members from DRDO, BrahMos Aerospace, Aircraft and Systems Testing Establishment (ASTE), Software Development Institute (SDI), IAF HQ and CEMILAC. This also led to operationalization of the weapon on Su-30 MKI of Indian Air Force (IAF).

The fastest supersonic cruise missile created history on 22 November 2017 after it was tested for the first time from IAF’s frontline aircraft Su-30 MKI against a seabased target. It was tested on 22 May 2019 in users’ configuration with launch point, target point, way point, launch altitude and range decided by the IAF. The airborne BrahMos was again flight tested on 17 December 2019 against a sea-based target successfully hitting the target at bull’s eye. The successful test firings have established BrahMos as the world’s most powerful conventional airborne precision strike. Continue reading


Aborder clash has plunged ties between India and China to their lowest point in decades. But one beneficiary looks clear — the US-India relationship. Experts say India could finally end equivocation about openly aligning itself with the long-eager United States, although there will still be disagreements — which, paradoxically, are now mostly due to Washington. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters that China “took incredibly aggressive action” in a hand-to-hand battle in the remote Himalayas on June 15 that killed 20 Indian soldiers.The hawkish Pompeo characterised the violence as part of a broader strategy by Beijing to challenge all of its neighbors.  Jeff M. Smith, a research fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation who has written a book on the India-China rivalry, said the United States is known to offer border intelligence to India, which is now likely to pick up the pace on defence acquisitions. Continue reading