Monday, October 27, 2008

SCPC: Blue Ribbon Commission for the Indian Armed Forces

While the politicians and the Government have been paying lip service to the armed forces in the last sixty years since Independence there has been no concerted effort on the part of the government to look at the problems of the armed forces in a comprehensive way as is normally done in other democratic countries. In US at regular intervals Blue Ribbon commissions are appointed to look into the problems of the forces. Similarly in UK there are Royal Commissions which go into the problems of armed forces from time to time and suggest remedies.

...All these issues could be referred to a high powered commission headed by an eminent personality who commands high credibility, like Ratan Tata or Narayanamurty, including retired chiefs of staff from three services, retired chairman of the Joint Intelligence, retired defence and foreign secretaries, eminent management specialists and others. At the same time it should be clear to the government and Parliament that once such a commission submits its recommendations there will be no further nitpicking by the committee of secretaries but the report should be accepted and implemented as is done in US or UK.

Military organisations traditionally rely upon its members to come together in ad hoc study groups to attempt resolution on important issues. However, there are occasions when outside assistance is helpful and a Blue Ribbon Commission can then contribute significantly. For example, the three services themselves or the military and the civil bureaucracy can become deeply divided over certain issues, and a bi-partisan view may be required to resolve the problem in a manner that will settle the immediate question and reduce (or eliminate) the level of rancour, so that the national defence setup might be united again. Another situation in which a Blue Ribbon commission might be appropriate occurs when the government seeks to establish a planning agenda to create an optimum organisation for national defence by undertaking a root-and-branch reform of the defence organisations. For full article please click on link: Blue Ribbon commission FAQs: To address the Bureaucratic bungling of the Indian Armed Forces

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