In a bid to ease out the issues and understand the concerns of the three armed forces regarding the building of theatre commands, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat has called a meeting, Hindustan Times.
This comes as the CDS Rawat looks to iron out the differences before working towards raising the maritime and air defence commands this year. The matter gains significance as the Indian Air Force (IAF) is said to have put up several issues even as the Indian Army, Indian Navy and the Ministry of Defence (MoD) have come out in total favour of the process.
Apart from getting its air assets divided and issues like rotation among services for theatre commanders, the IAF’s concern is the perceived dilution of powers of the air chief as the theatre commanders will be in charge of operations and directly report to the Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee with three chiefs as members.
Notably, earlier this month, following a presentation, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had asked CDS Rawat to call a meeting of stakeholders and discuss all the issues threadbare before taking the theatre command concept to the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) for final approval.
The MoD had accorded acceptance in principle to theatre commands in 2017 with Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi handing over the mandate of reorganisation exercise to CDS Rawat.
It should be noted that from the small island country of Maldives to the mighty US, a majority of nations across the globe function on theatre command concept with the idea of seamless integration among the land, sea and air forces. China has already reorganized its seven military districts into five theatre commands, while Pakistan is on its journey to establish a similar military structure with the help of Beijing.
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