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Number of studies underway to decide suitable model for joint theatre commands, says Army Commander

As we look at the manner in which it is going to happen, there are a number of models which are available all over the world. We are studying various models. The best model that is most suited for the Indian Armed forces will be adopted in due course of time.

Written by Sushant Kulkarni | Pune |
January 24, 2021 12:32:13 am
Indian Armed forces, indian army joint theatre command, southern army commander, indian army news, indian express newsLieutenant General CP Mohanty interacts with the media at Southern Command Headquarters Saturday. (Photo: Pavan Khengre)

THE SOUTHERN Army Commander, Lieutenant General CP Mohanty, said on Saturday that a number of studies were underway to decide a suitable model for Indian Armed forces towards setting up the joint theatre command structures. He also highlighted the need to enhance amphibious operational capabilities of Armed forces.

Lt Gen Mohanty, who is soon slated to move as Vice Chief of the Army Staff, was interacting with the media at the Headquarters of the Southern Command in Pune. When asked how the role of Southern Command will transform as Armed forces move towards theaterisation or setting up joint theatre command structures, he said, “The Chief of Army Staff has spoken in great details about the joint theatre commands. Right now we fight our battles in different domains and the triservices coordinate resources when required. But the moment joint theatre commands come into picture, we would be ab initio integrated under one single headquarters, which would be manned by all the three services. There would be integration from the beginning, right from the process of planning and training to the execution of the operations.

As we look at the manner in which it is going to happen, there are a number of models which are available all over the world. We are studying various models. The best model that is most suited for the Indian Armed forces will be adopted in due course of time. Towards that end, there are a number of studies which are underway. As the things get approved by the government, they would be executed in a phased manner.”

Lt Gen Mohanty added, “As far as Southern Command is concerned, we are also working towards integration with our sister services of the Navy and Air Force. We have a large number of establishments of all the three services and towards that end we have achieved a lot of jointness between the three services and we are working together towards achievement of our goal of joint theatre commands.”

Referring to the review of tri-services Amphibious Task Force he conducted recently, Lt Gen Mohanty said, “Very recently I have witnessed an important tri-service exercise and I am pleased to inform you that the level of integration has been of extremely high order. There is still more needed towards that end and we are working together.”

He added, “Our maritime and amphibious capabilities need to be developed. We are an emerging power and a regional power. I am sure that there would be always requirements for amphibious operations.”

Speaking about the emerging threats, Lt Gen Mohanty said, “We are continuously analysing the emerging threats and the new technologies to ensure that we are a future ready force. The conventional, non-conventional and emerging threats are being monitored continuously and protections measures are being constantly evolved.”

On the revenue deficit in the cantonment boards, the General officer said, “I am already in touch with the senior hierarchy. We have bid for the funds. The pandemic has had its effect as far as revenue generations are concerned. It will take us time. I am in dialogue with the Integrated Headquarters of MoD and Defence Estates to meet the aspirations of the cantonments.”

Speaking on the Army’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Lt Gen Mohanty said, “Key challenges before us during pandemic have been to keep ourselves safe and simultaneously provide aid wherever needed may that be civil administration or the populace around us. Priority was to keep our force safe so if there is any crisis at the border we would be ready to fight it out. Many quarantine facilities were built by us. As far as the Army is concerned, we have prioritised our vaccination drive. We have started vaccinating our unsung heroes and heroines — our health workers — across military hospitals. Till date, around 6,000 have been vaccinated. We will proceed as per priority.”

The Army Commander also said, “We have also carried out with our partners the refurbishing of the National War Memorial and the museum.

This would be inaugurated soon and will be reopened to the public in a new avatar. I am sure it will continue to inspire the youth to join the Armed forces.”

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