More reports on: Defence general

Indian Army set for major restructuring

31 August 2017

The Indian Army will soon undergo a major restructuring, involving redeployment of 57,000 officers, JCOs and men for various other tasks, by the end of December 2019, in an effort to improve the force's teeth-to-tail ratio.

The restructuring follows recommendations of a committee of experts, with Lt Gen (Retd) (Dr) DB Shekatkar as its chairman, which had recommended measures for enhancing combat capability and rebalancing defence expenditure of the armed forces with an aim to increase "teeth-to-tail ratio".

The committee had submitted its report to the ministry in December 2016, which considered the 99 recommendations and approved 65 of the recommenfdations for implementation.

These reforms will be carried out in a phased manner and completed in all respects by 31 December 2019. Restructuring by the Indian Army is aimed at enhancing Combat Capability in a manner that the officers / JCOs / ORs will be used for improving operational preparedness and civilians will be redeployed in different wings of the Armed Forces for improving efficiency.

In a first ever exercise after Independence, the ministry of defence approved the decisions after an extensive consultation with all stakeholders, defence minister Arun Jaitley said after a cabinet meeting.

The first phase of the reforms involves redeployment and restructuring of approximately 57,000 posts of officers/JCOs/ORs and civilians.

Major reforms include optimisation of Signals establishments to include Radio Monitoring Companies, Corps Air Support Signal Regiments, Air Formation Signal Regiments, Composite Signal Regiments and merger of Corps Operating and Engineering Signal Regiments.

Restructuring of repair cadres in the Army will include Base Workshops, Advance Base Workshops and Static / Station Workshops in the field Army.

Ordnance echelons will be redeployed to include Vehicle Depots, Ordnance Depots and Central Ordnance Depots apart from streamlining inventory control mechanisms.

The plan also involves better utilisation of supply and transport echelons and Animal Transport units. Besides, it is proposed to close some military farms and army postal establishments in peace locations.

It is proposed that the standards for recruitment of clerical staff and drivers in the Army be enhanced.

The restructuring exercise will also involve measures for improving the efficiency of the National Cadet Corps for its better utilisation.

Implementation of the restructuring has already begun with the decision of the Cabinet Committee on Security to close 39 military farms in a time bound manner.

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