A pocket book on Chinese warrior Sun Tzus Art of War compiled by city-based Colonel (retd) Vinay B Dalvi was released by Lt Gen (retd) Ashok Joshi,former Director General of Military Training (DGMT) in the presence of Vice Admiral (retd) SCS Bangara,former Flag Officer Commanding in Chief (FOC-in-C),Southern Naval Command and former commandant of the NDA.
The book was released at the RSI Club . Foreword for the book has been written by Maj Gen (retd) G D Bakshi,while the afterword has been written by Maj Gen (retd) Raj Mehta.The book launch ceremony was followed by an informal discussion on the nuances in military training in India with special focus on the NDA.
The challenge with the academy staff is that not many seem to have even read the history of the academy. Certain traditions were being followed blindly in the squadrons. For instance,the Sinhagad punishment,which,over the years had become a matter of pride amongst cadets. Not many in the faculty are aware that this particular punishment could be awarded not without the knowledge of the commandant. This is just an example of how a cadet,the central element,is being neglected in the training imparted at what is considered the cradle of Indias military leadership. So much is the stress on the official and off-the training hours physical training in the academy,that if a cadet ends up sleeping in the class during lecture hours,it does not come as a surprise. Rather than punishing the cadet,the staff must realise that it is the faculty that is responsible for the phenomenon, said one of the senior officials in the gathering.
A detailed discussion was also carried out on the need to revise SSB selection and the role of Defence Institute of Psychological Research (DIPR) in the recruitment process. A need was also spelt for carrying out periodic reviews of the training at the academy.
Introduction of degrees for the cadets is yet another decision that has hampered the bringing up of cadets in the NDA. A major setback of the decision was that it made the university norms applicable for recruiting civilian staff at the NDA. The new norms have changed the cadet-civilian relation,causing damage to the value system of the academy, said another senior officer.
We must go back to our roots, said Joshi.
Commenting on the integration of the three services,Dalvi said,Integration of the three services means that an officer from one service should have a clear understanding of the nuances of the other two services. What seems to be happening in reality is not jointmanship,but course-mates at work and the right place to induce the spirit of jointmanship in the officers of the three services is NDA.
The gathering was attended by senior retired officers,including ex- NDA officers,GTOs and psychologists.