Defence Planning Committee likely to review draft national security strategy in first meeting

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New Delhi | Published: May 2, 2018 4:54:19 PM

The DPC which is being tasked with ambitious goals. Consisting of the three Service Chiefs, General Bipin Rawat, Admiral Sunil Lanba, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, Foreign Secretary, Defence Secretary and also Finance Secretary of expenditure department, the DPC aims at bridging the lacunae between bureaucratic structures and security forces.

Modi Governmnet has appointed NSA Ajit Doval to spearhead the Defence Planning Committee, to create a new roadmap for national security. (PTI)

In an attempt to overcome the perils of not having a definitive national security strategy or national defence policy, the Government of India established the Defence Planning Committee (DPC) under the chairmanship of Ajit Doval, the National Security Advisor (NSA). The DPC which will be meeting for the first time tomorrow and will discuss the draft NSS and national defence policy that is imperative for today’s changing security dynamics, reported TOI. The National Security Council which has been in existence since 1999 has not put out an official national security policy so far.

Experts suggest that the reason behind not having a single official national security document is because of the lack of political consensus on national security matters. Dr Arvind Gupta, former director general of IDSA, writes in the daily IDSA Comment, that the two reasons behind the absence of an official document are, no political consensus and the successive government’s not having coordinated and synergised departments to formulate policy on national security.

The DPC which is being tasked with ambitious goals. Consisting of the three Service Chiefs, General Bipin Rawat, Admiral Sunil Lanba, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, Foreign Secretary, Defence Secretary and also Finance Secretary of expenditure department, the DPC aims at bridging the lacunae between bureaucratic structures and security forces. Apart from formulating a definitive defence and national security policy, the DPC which has four sub-committees will look into matters of defence diplomacy, defence manufacturing & ecosystem and also defence capability development.

It was also reported that the DPC will be reviewing the draft NSS formulated by the National Security Advisory Board (NSAB), a non-bureaucratic security expert group under NSC. Earlier, the Integrated Defence Staff had also prepared a draft NSS and had submitted it to the NSA MK Narayanan under the UPA government. There were also successive attempts made to formulate an NSS, that which focused on protecting India’s borders, but unfortunately, none of it bore any fruit.

The NDA government, which has now established the DPC, aims at building a concrete defence policy, increase inter-services communication and coordination and also bring in reforms related to modernisation. Apart from creating security review systems and a comprehensive defence strategy, the DPC will also build a roadmap for defence manufacturing and will aim at boosting defence manufacturing sector.

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