THE Indian Armed Forces have been largely responsible for assisting the nation in its quest for peace, stability and growth. Indeed, the institution of Armed Forces has proved to be a significant and ultimate instrument in protecting the unity and integrity of the country while preserving the national image as a progressive and vibrant democracy. India is about to emerge as a responsible and dominating global player and its Armed Forces have risen on every occasion to protect the integrity of the country.
Today India lives surrounded with instability in its neighbourhood where it has to remain ever ready to meet any external challenge, not to mention the internal too. Ringed by turbulent States—Pakistan in northwest, Nepal in the north, Bangladesh in southeast and Myanmar in northeast – whose instability has percolated through India’s porous borders into the country in the form of insurgents, militants, terrorists and religious fundamentalists, India is ground for terrorist activities from Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh. Fundamentalist religious groups in Bangladesh under Pakistani tutelage, financed from Middle East and China’s patronage have synergised to add to India’s security woes.
On attaining Independence in 1947, India inherited possibly the best instrument of war in Asia—a battle-ready military machine with the reputation of wining wars in distant lands. Britain had employed it skilfully for over a century to sustain her empire and treasured it as the jewel in its crown.
The author of the book, who was commissioned into 69 Armoured Regiment in 1972, gives a historical overrun, the role, structure and branches, recruitment and brief history of the wars fought after Independence by the Army; the maritime background, the growth and operations of the Navy, its past, present and future and the career options; the history, role and operations, the branches and recruitment of the Air Force; and finally the role and importance of the Coast Guard.
In today’s favourable geo-political scenario, India’s strategy must be to strengthen the existing friendly relationship while developing mutually advantageous new relationships.
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