On 15 August, 2019 our Prime Minister has made a very important announcement- to appoint a Chief Defense Staff. Having a CDS will help India’s defense management more efficient.
Who is Chief Defense Staff?
CDS would be the officer appointed to overlook the working of the three services and also coordinate between them effectively. The duty of the CDS is to guide the three services with seamless views. He will also give best single-point advice to the Prime Minister of India. This will help India, to plan long-term defense management. CDS will also improve manpower, strategies and more over, unity in all the operations.
Why was Chief Defense Staff not appointed before in India?
The first ever proposal to appoint a CDS was decided in the year 2000 Kargil Review Committee. This is because, during the war, there had been lots of mis-management because of three different opinions from different heads. The post of IDS Integrated Defense Staff was created but never filled. Along with this, Congress- the ruling party at that time opposed this idea as well. Ministry of Defense also opposed it.
Who is currently advising Prime Minister in Military affairs?
Currently the Chairman of the Staff Committee, Birender Singh Dhanoa (the Air Chief Marshal) advises PM Modi. However, he is not having all the functional capacity as that of a CDS. The other countries which already have CDS are France, US, The UK and China.
Narendra Modi said;
“Reform is also necessary. Defence reform has been in the works for a long time now and reports have been tabled several times. The rules of war are changing and India can’t think in a bubble. Our forces need to move together and can’t be falling behind. Coordination should be in tandem with the other. I have decided that Chief of Defence Staff will be created. And all three forces will have one chief and this will help unite the forces.”
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on this new announcement by Narendra Modi;
“The announcement of the Institution of CDS by PM Modi has been made keeping in view of the much needed reform to streamline and further improve the coordination among the 3 Forces and their functioning. CDS will have a long lasting and a positive impact on India’s security.”
Former Army chief General Ved Prakash Malik also said;
“Thank you PM Modi for announcing historic step of institution of CDS. This step will make our national security more effective and more economical. It will ensure better jointmanship and multi-disciplinary coordination. Salute!”