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Be an armchair general and help MoD and our forces!

Discussion in 'Defence Analysis' started by Sancho, Apr 20, 2017.

  1. Didact

    Didact IDF NewBie

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    Well, I was asked almost the exact same question in an interview for one of the better B-schools this year, when they found out that I had a keen interest in this sector. (One of the panelists is serving as a director in one of the fast developing defence companies) .Of course the answer had to be from a policy making/business perspective.

    I propose a two tier independent organisation to streamline the requirements for the armed forces. Tier 1 will be responsible for acquisitions that the armed forces require now or in the next 5 years. These requirements will be met by foreign acquisition or license manufacture as the situation demands.

    Tier 2 will be nodal organisation structured towards developing indegenious capability in the private sector. Towards this goal, the organisation will analyse and codify every single equipment in service with the armed forces, as also every possible equipment forseen a a requirement. The objective would be to provide the private sector a clearly defined itemised list of committed requirements along with the time-period of their requirement. For example, the we will phase out the T-72M1s by mid 2020s. The objective is to provide a clear, committed requirement for say 2600 FMBTs that will be purchased starting 2027 followed by a series of upgrades and retooling/servicing every 7-8 years. The committments will be final and binding. The army cannot demand changes on whims and fancies.

    This will ensure that the private sector has certainity about their investments, which will boost their willingness to take on projects. Such a structure will also mean that adequate time will be available to meet the demands of developing the said technology indegeniously as the development will take place while the current product is still in service, reducing the need to deploy equipment beyond their intended service life.
     
  2. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    The same arguments were being made in the 1970s/80s in the US in the lead up to the Goldwater-Nichols act (1986). The current set up is a complete joke and entirely ill-suited for modern combined arms combat operations, reforms need to be made otherwise India will continue to punch well below its weight and be bullied by nations 1/8th its size.
     
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  3. lca-fan

    lca-fan Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    CDS is the need of hour. A CDS need not come from Army alone and could be from any arm IN & IAF included but he should be an experienced war fighter knowing nitty gritty of all the arms and as @Abingdonboy pointed out the whole idea is to reduce friction which currently is there. Also centralized unbiased purchase of arms will ensure procurement of weapons which are of utmost importance first, which means if buying submarines can bolster India's defence instead of buying 100 tanks then it could be prioritize submarine procurement and kick the can for tanks for later years. With separate procurement budgets each arm buys out whatever it wants to finish off the allocated money whether that procurement benefits India's defence or not.
     
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  4. The enlightened

    The enlightened Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Can start by looking at how country's like Turkey and South Korea were able to acquire meaningful ToT to get to a point where they will be able to meet a majority of their own needs with domestically as well as export. Also look at how a lot of smaller countries like South Africa, Czechoslovakia were able to innovate as well as they did using much smaller budgets and come up with world class products from scratch.

    Also scrap Rafale.
     
  5. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    Having a joint chief department would work in a similar direction I guess, just that it would still remain within the forces and wouldn't be independent.
    I like the idea of separating procurements and developments too, would make the procurement side less dependent on DRDO.

    The second part is more tricky though, because you can't simply make a list by looking at our forces only. The requirements for the future, are also dependent on the threat perception, the capability of the enemy and what the current or future state of technology is.

    For example, we have to replace Mi 8 and Mi 17 helicopters, so we know at a certain point if time we need medium class helicopters. HAL is proposing their IMRH, which is relatively simple and includes not much risks in development. But at the same time the world has gone a generation ahead in helicopter technologies, with Western countries, Russia and even China developing high speed helicopters with far more performance.
     
  6. bharathp

    bharathp Developers Guild Developers -IT and R&D

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    realistic idea
    #1) pick 3-4 areas of expertise and channelize all energies there to gain expertise. if HAL was not pulled in so many directions (UAVs, LCA, upgrade of MKIs, Jags etc) we might have had a kick ass 2-3 products instead of mediocre 10 products.
    #2) incentivize Indian start -ups to take up challenging defense problems like a DARPA. the incentive being - definite production order or atleast a good cash prize. then you will see the real potential of Indian Engineering colleges (some of the students are truly world class- we are losing most to IT companies) and throw open the doors for more start-ups and spin offs
    #3) Indigenization is only a short term idea, the long term idea is in-house innovation. dont kill the innovation in the pursuit of "we need this product NOW". this is already being followed in case of Naval LCA and LCA mk2. we may not need those two products for the end users, but those products are needed by the engineers to validate and improve their own knowledge.
    BONUS: #4) remove ALL reservations in Defense related and critical orgs. ONLY MERIT should be the deciding factor to get in and grow up in these orgs. else you will lose all those engineers to NASA/LM etc.
     
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  7. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    Simple, joint developments and offsets!
    Turkeys developments are largely based on foreign designs, which they made their own by using it as the base. The T129 for example is based on an Italian/British helicopter, with US engine and gun, while they customized avionics and some weapons for it.
    Their armored carriers are based on US developments..., theit stealth fighter development will be supported by BAE and probably Eurojet...
    And that indeed should be the way to go for us as well.
     
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  8. T-123456

    T-123456 2nd Lieutant THINKER

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    Create a real defence industry with top of the line products,let private companies team(JV's,join international programs,joint development etc) up with the best Western defence companies to compete for Indian Armed forces tenders and in time for international tenders.
    A country the size of India should already have a real defence industry which i dont see.
    You only buy and are dependent on others.
    The only world class industry you have(as far as i can see) is the Space Industry.
    You need to develop,not buy.
     
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  9. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    You are absolutely right, but we have to differ what HAL is doing for the forces (upgrades and production of fighters) with their own development. They can't reject to build something if the MoD requires it or if there is no alternative.
    DRDO on the other side wants far too much and that shows in their performance.

    Start ups and innovations are important too, but with Indias demographic, that will come sooner or later for sure and they will push especially privat players to more commitment into developments.
     
  10. The enlightened

    The enlightened Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Not so
    T-155 is the best example.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/T-155_Fırtına
    They can export this while we will likely still be signing spare parts agreements 30 years from now.

    The point is there seems to be a fundamental difference in the ToT that we get and what others manage to snag. The problem IMHO is our tender based Procurement which sets rigid rules on how much 'local production' is needed at what stage which ends up depriving us from negotiating for the best possible deals which would require bilateral negotiations with interested parties.
     
  11. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    Which is the same case, they base "their development" on a foreign base product, which is similar to Brahmos. We can export Brahmos too and offering it to Vietnam for example, because we invested in the joint development, while we only paid for the licence production of the K9 gun.
     
  12. GuardianRED

    GuardianRED Captain FULL MEMBER

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    permanent representation of all 3 forces in the MoD, thus we don't have excuses such as files being moving all over the place, thus this being the reason for delayed procurement

    removal all bureaucrats from defence procurement

    All defence tenders should be time bound , this includes the awarding the contact. Any issues - ALWAYS have a PLAN B - for eg: case of single vender !, Please for god sake, have award the contract to them
     
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  13. kiduva21

    kiduva21 Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    Not expert , so very Narrow minded view
    1. Rafael - allow the private companies to handle it , free HAL from one more burden, we can go for Rafael for IAC-2 also for gods sake finish the deal properly and start production later we can think on the follow up orders.

    2. Arjun Tank - Order in Batches let the industry develop , later upgrade the initial batches to full versions , get Israeli/Russian help and add the anti projectile gun in it. order in very large quantity.

    3. ACs and LPD/LHD are on due course , Now concentrate on destroyers (kolkatha class/ modernise it with more capacity for missiles) we have more number of ship yards that can build / handle them don't allow the learned skills to die down.
     
  14. mugundhan

    mugundhan 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    We should invest in cyber warfare. Sadly, We are not even have 20% capability of China.
     
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  15. randomradio

    randomradio Colonel Technical Analyst

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    1. Overhaul MoD bureaucracy.
    2. Overhaul DRDO.
    3. Setup the Joint Chiefs.
     
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