Future warfares to be ‘hybrid’, need to enhance capabilities: Army chief Bipin Rawat

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Published: November 16, 2017 9:13:21 AM

Battlefields of the future will be "complex" and warfare "hybrid" in nature, Army chief Bipin Rawat said today while stressing the need for enhancing required capabilities to tackle such scenarios.

Army chief Bipin Rawat, Bipin Rawat, Warfare, battlefieldsBattlefields of the future will be “complex” and warfare “hybrid” in nature, Army chief Bipin Rawat said today while stressing the need for enhancing required capabilities to tackle such scenarios. (Image: Reuters)

Battlefields of the future will be “complex” and warfare “hybrid” in nature, Army chief Bipin Rawat said today while stressing the need for enhancing required capabilities to tackle such scenarios.  With changing patterns in terrain, armoured vehicles like battle tanks must have the capacity and capability to operate on the western as well the northern borders, the Army chief said.  He was addressing the inaugural session of a seminar on ‘Future Armoured Vehicles India 2017’ here.  “The future battlefield will be complex,” Rawat said. While fighting battles in conventional domains, the sub- conventional domain “just cannot be overlooked”. The two have to be concurrent, he noted.

“And of course, there will be the hybrid use of warfare that will get entwined within. So there will be the use of space, cyber, there will be information warfare in war time,” Rawat said.  To deal with such scenarios, it is essential to understand the kind of weapon systems, equipment and technologies forces will confront, he said.  Some part of the Thar desert is hardening, the Army chief said. With the development of canals, barren land has turned green and population density has increased, posing challenges, he added.  “With the canal systems evolving, we have to address the requirement of bridges and the manner in which these armoured fighting vehicles will negotiate them. That is why I say the battlefield will turn complex… the terrain will add to the complexities,” Rawat said.

Whatever be the future, he added, armoured vehicles must have the capacity and capability to operate on the western as well as the northern border.  “Therefore, whatever weapons we are going to introduce must be capable of interoperability on both the fronts,” he said.  Rawat noted that the Army was looking at modernising its mechanised forces and there should be a timeline for it.  The Army is looking to introduce modern tanks and ICVs (Infantry Combat Vehicles) from 2025-2027.  “This is the time we can make no mistake. We have to decide on what we want, what are the capabilities and what exactly we have to achieve. We must have the capability to operate by day and night,” Rawat added. While doing so, the requirements of the infantry also have to be looked into, he asserted.

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