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05:32 AM, April 19, 2018
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Indian Government to Create Defense Planning Committee
Indian Arjun Tank on display during DefExpo 2018 (Image: Staff Photograph)

The Indian government has decided to create a permanent planning committee for defense that will overlook military and security strategy, draft capability development plans and guide (and accelerate) defence equipment acquisitions.

The DPC (Defense Planning Committee) body will be chaired by the National Security Advisor and will comprise the chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, three service chiefs, the defense, expenditure and foreign secretaries, Hindustan Times reported quoting a defense ministry notification Thursday.

The DPC will prepare draft reports on “national security strategy, international defence engagement strategy, roadmap to build (a) defence manufacturing ecosystem, strategy to boost defence exports, and priority capability development plans”, according to the notification. It will submit its reports to defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The DPC is expected to meet soon after National Security Advisor Ajit Doval returns from Germany on April 21.

The Chief of Integrated Defence Staff to the Chairman of the Chief of the Staff Committee (CISC) will be the member secretary of the committee, according to the notification, and the HQ of the Integrated Defence Staff will be the secretariat of the DPC.

The notification lists four sub-committees that could be created under the DPC across four broad areas: policy and strategy; plans and capability development; defence diplomacy; and defence manufacturing eco-system.

The DPC will prepare military doctrines and, in turn, define Indian military objectives for the future. The doctrines will reflect India’s no-first-use nuclear policy as well as take into account the possibility of a two-front war (on the country’s western and northern fronts). They will justify the Indian Navy’s demand of two aircraft carriers and the role of Indian Air Force in the era of long range stand-off weapons and missile theatre defence.

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