Andaman Command Key To Checkmate China Strategy

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by IBRIS, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. IBRIS

    IBRIS Senior Member Senior Member

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    Andaman Command Key To Checkmate China Strategy

    By Anantha Krishnan M.
    PORT BLAIR, India
    [​IMG]
    India’s Tri-Service Command is gradually increasing its assets in order to monitor Chinese strategy in the region.

    The command is situated in Andaman and Car Nicobar Islands with Port Blair as its headquarters. Officials from the Andaman Nicobar Command (ANC), confirmed that India is keeping a close watch on the activities of China and other countries in the region.

    Though the officials stuck to a pre-planned brief on the sensitive China queries, it was clear the strategically located ANC keeps its antennas up round-the-clock to ensure that the region is well-guarded against external challenges.

    ”We are looking at developing assets along the islands in the next five years,” ANC chief Adm. D.K. Joshi told AVIATION WEEK. “We are at handshaking distance from Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. No other region has such a contiguous borderline.”

    Through its “String of Pearls” strategy, China has signaled its intentions in the Malacca Strait by boosting its efforts to build ports in Hambantota (Sri Lanka) and Gwadar (Pakistan). “The Malacca Strait in the Indian Ocean is pivotal for uninterrupted oil and power supplies from the Gulf to China. We are gearing up to modernize our installations and infrastructure in Andaman,” Joshi said.

    The “String of Pearls” term was coined in a 2003 Booz Allen consultancy report to the Pentagon elaborating China’s designs to gain command in the Indian Ocean. The ANC, set-up in 2001, has had its share of teething problems. It marked the first time that such a unique experiment was undertaken by India. An official close to the situation notes that because the three services have their own distinct way of doing things it took some time for all pieces to fall in place.

    ANC photo: Satish, Ministry of Defense
     
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  3. IBRIS

    IBRIS Senior Member Senior Member

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    Indian Navy, Coast Guard to be Aided by Satellite based Coastal Security System
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    The Indian Space Research Organization's (ISRO) Telemetry Tracking and Command Network is developing a satellite based detection system for coastal security. These measures are now being initiated following the 2008 terrorist attacks in which terrorists entered Mumbai through the sea route.

    The system will enhance the maritime surveillance plans of the Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard. Aviation Week quotes anonymous sources:
    "AT PRESENT THE ICG IS EQUIPPED WITH TECHNOLOGY TO TRACE VESSELS WHICH ARE OVER 20 METERS [66 FT.] IN LENGTH. THE NEW RADAR WILL TAKE THE SURVEILLANCE TO VESSELS BELOW 20 METERS, WHICH IS VERY CRUCIAL. GENERALLY SMALL BOATS POSE BIGGER THREATS."

    The new facility will be tested by the Tri-Service Command at Andaman with the help of ISRO's ground station.
    "THE COASTAL SECURITY HAS BEEN ONE OF THE PRIMARY CONCERNS OF INDIAN SECURITY AND DEFENSE OFFICIALS POST-[MUMBAI ATTACKS]. THE LACK OF [NEW] SYSTEMS HAS [BEEN] SEEN AS A SERIOUS LAPSE BY THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT ... NOW, WITH ISRO STEPPING IN, IT WILL ADD MORE TEETH TO INDIA'S MARITIME SECURITY PLANS. BANGALORE-BASED BHARAT ELECTRONICS LTD. ALSO IS DEVELOPING NEW RADARS THAT WILL BE INSTALLED IN VARIOUS COASTAL LINES. USER TRIALS ARE OVER AND THE PROJECT HAS NOW ENTERED THE EXECUTION STAGE."

    At present, Coast Guard vessels communicate with VHF transmitters. The new satellite-based system will enable the Coast Guard and the Navy to track vessels accurately and locate the ones that are not registered.
     
  4. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

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    ^^ Great news. Seems like the military is not sitting idle like the political elite of our country. I think that Coast Guard should also take a leaf out of IN's book and start going aggressively indigenous. The Dornier aircraft can easily be replaced by NAL SARAS with a few modifications to the latter. Same way, the CG must start acquiring indigenous armored hovercraft with Gatling cannons, short and medium range missiles as well as rocket launchers. Currently only some companies as one in Chennai builds civilian hovercraft. This company can be given some tech transfers and asked to build military versions of their product and install Indian/GLONASS communication and tracking systems on them. Afterall, we're financial partners in GLONASS programme and Russia has signed an MOU with us to share the full access of military signal. About time we use this in CG as well alongside the tri-services.

    Apart from this, Dhruvs should be handed over en masse to replace the Chetaks and Cheetahs for better surveillance. The South Korean CG has more choppers than our own which is a shame since they outnumber us 3:1 despite having a coastline 1/10th our size. Apart from this, fast attack boats, midget submarines etc must also be equipped
     
  5. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Andaman has already been an important location in Indian strategy against Chinese policy of string of pearls. Its our stationary Aircraft carrier. we already have presence of all 3 branch of forces there. we should improve our infrastructure there. make it a fortress thats invincible for Chinese navy. Thats our Iron curtain against string of pearls.
     
  6. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    [​IMG]
    Modi acts swiftly to expand Military base at Andaman & Nicobar Islands to assert dominance over the Indian Ocean
    http://www.defencenews.in/defence-news-internal.aspx?id=FZsHwcwNZQk=

    Located just north of Indonesia, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands rest between the Bay of Bengal to the west and the Andaman Sea to the east. Great Nicobar Island, the southernmost point of India and of the island chain stands next to the Strait of Malacca, one of the most important shipping lanes in the world.
    [​IMG]

    Located just north of Indonesia, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands rest between the Bay of Bengal to the west and the Andaman Sea to the east. Great Nicobar Island, the southernmost point of India and of the island chain stands next to the Strait of Malacca, one of the most important shipping lanes in the world.

    Over 60,000 ships pass through the Malacca Strait every year and it is the energy lifeline for Southeast and East Asian countries. The Strait is also the closest access point from China to the Indian Ocean. For those reasons, the islands location is a significant asset to India in checking Chinese naval power in the region.


    India's Expansion of Military Presence ::

    Port Blair which is the administrative center of the Andaman Islands currently hosts the Andaman and Nicobar Command (ANC) of the Indian Armed Forces. The ANC is the only joint tri-service command in India’s military and comprises forces from the navy, air force, and army. Established in 2001 to allow for joint operations between the three armed services, the ANC saw little development until recently. There were attempts to expand the military presence though no serious inroads were made over the years. Under current Prime Minister Narendra Modi though, there is a concerted effort to expand as Modi seeks to reassert India’s traditional dominance over the Indian Ocean.

    At opposite ends of the island chain, India is constructing longer airstrips that will be able to host long-range surveillance aircraft. In the south at Campbell Bay there is INS Baaz, an airbase that was constructed in 2012 overlooking the Malacca Strait. Currently, New Delhi plans to greatly extend the length of the runway there allowing the base to take on bigger planes such as the Boeing P8 surveillance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft. There are plans to in the near future to place multirole Su-30MKI fighter jets at both INS Baaz and at NAS Shibpur which is located on North Andaman Island. These will provide the Indian military with a powerful strike capability that can be used against enemy warships if needed.

    Meanwhile the Indian Navy is looking to double the vessels it has in the ANC to 32 by 2022. Already around 14 ships such as patrol boats, fast attack craft (FAC), and amphibious landing ships are based at INS Jarawa in Port Blair though future plans call for larger, more capable warships such as frigates to be based there. To help facilitate the expansion of the base, plans are in place to acquire a new floating dry dock for the base that will supplement the floating dock already in operation there.


    China and the Indian Ocean ::

    Ships of China’s Peoples Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) have increasingly been making forays into the Indian Ocean and docking in ports of India’s neighbors. This is causing concern in New Delhi where it is feared that China is attempting to increase its influence and presence in the Indian Ocean where India has been the dominant power. Chinese officials have repeatedly denied any hostile intentions though have also said that Indian should not consider the Indian Ocean as its own backyard. Both countries share somewhat good relations though there are many issues that cause dispute and this is one of them.

    Senior Captain Zhao Yi, associate professor of the Institute of Strategy in China’s National Defense University recently said “backyard is not a very appropriate word to use for an open sea and international areas of sea.” This was said in Beijing during an interaction with Indian journalists in response to a question regarding increasing Chinese navy forays into the Indian Ocean. Zhao did admit though that India “has a special role to play in stabilizing the Indian Ocean region” due to geographical considerations. Meanwhile Senior Captain Wei Xiao Dong, chief of staff of the Shanghai Naval Garrison said in response to Indian journalists concerns about PLAN activities in the Indian Ocean, that there is no reason to “show concern or worry”.

    For New Delhi, more unsettling than PLAN warships entering the Indian Ocean, is the presence of PLAN submarines. In May, a PLAN Type 041 submarine for the first time docked in Karachi, Pakistan. China immediately downplayed the event saying that PLAN activities in the Indian Ocean such as this routine port visit are “open and transparent” and that they are not directed at any nation. Last September, a PLAN submarine docked in Colombo, Sri Lanka and several weeks later in November another PLAN submarine along with a warship docked in Sri Lanka.


    Future ::

    While Beijing paints its intentions for the Indian Ocean as nothing but peaceful, its dialogue is mixed with veiled threats aimed at New Delhi. On one hand China states that its ships are just transiting or taking part in training missions while on the other hand it is quick to claim that the Indian Ocean is not the sole preserve of India. True, the Indian Ocean does not belong to India but India is the dominant power and has every right to be concerned when PLAN warships are visiting the ports of countries India has less than positive relations with.

    The expansion of the military bases in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands will provide India with the means to better check incoming PLAN vessels before they can reach the Bay of Bengal and Indian Ocean. In a way the islands can be viewed as the first line of defense India has against China in the Indian Ocean. Furthermore, their location near the Malacca Strait is of vital importance.

    Over three-quarters of China’s energy imports flow through that Strait. In the event of a conflict between India and China, India has the means to blockade the Strait and in the process, deprive China of oil and gas; one would hope though that such a scenario will not come to pass. Regardless, New Delhi is taking a smart step by expanding its military presence in the islands, one which might cause Beijing to rethink its plans in the Indian Ocean.
     
  7. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    [​IMG]


    At least thirty characters ... should suffice
     
  8. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Green nod for radar station at Narcondam in Andamans

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...arcondam-in-Andamans/articleshow/36411949.cms
    NEW DELHI: After granting green clearance to a major naval infrastructure project at Karwar along the western coast, the environment ministry has now given its go-ahead to install a radar station at Narcondam in Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

    The project was pending for long despite repeated requests from the defence establishment which wanted to install the radar at the strategic location in view of suspected Chinese presence and "listening post" on nearby Coco Island.

    Though Coco Island in the Bay of Bengal belongs to Myanmar, China is learnt to have set up extensive infrastructure there.

    Environment minister Prakash Javadekar told TOI that the radar project was of strategic important to India. "Only 8-10 people will be employed at the station. It will not in any way affect the natural environment there," the minister said, wondering why such an important project was kept pending for so long under the previous government.

    Referring to Coco Island, Javadekar had said on Monday that China has a presence there. "If China is sitting in front and is doing something and we can't even monitor, the country cannot run like that. So these kinds of projects, which are of importance to the country's security, we have started clearing on a priority basis," he had said while addressing reporters at the Indian Women's Press Corps.

    Green activists, however, objected to the project when it first came into the public domain a couple of years ago. Pointing out that Narcondam is home to around 300 Narcondam Hornbill, a rare bird found nowhere else in the world, they had demanded that the project not be cleared as it would affect the rare species. They had said clearance to the radar project would be the "death knell for Narcondam Hornbills".

    The green signal to the radar station comes after the environment ministry gave clearance to Phase-IIA expansion of the futuristic Karwar naval base in coastal Karnataka, which is designed to give India both strategic depth and operational flexibility on the western seaboard against Pakistan.

    The Cabinet Committee on Security had cleared the around Rs 13,000 crore Phase-IIA expansion of the base over two years ago but it was stuck for want of environmental clearance. After the Rs 2,629 crore Phase-I, the Karwar base can berth 11 major warships and 10 yardcraft. The warships include aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya. The Navy will be able to berth 32 major warships and submarines after Phase-IIA is completed by around 2020.

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  9. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Centre puts bombs before birds
    - UPA missile testing policy for Andamans reversed
    Sujan Dutta
    [​IMG]
    The Narcondam Hornbill

    New Delhi, May 20: The Narendra Modi government has granted the military permission to test missiles targeting four ecologically fragile islands in the Andaman and Nicobar group in the Bay of Bengal, junking a UPA policy derisively known as "birds-over-bombs".

    The islands are uninhabited or largely uninhabited for most of the year, a source in the defence ministry claimed.

    Environmental organisations such as the Nature Conservation Foundation, Mysore, claim the islands are home to a variety of flora and fauna. Among wildlife seen on the islands are birds such as the Nicobarese Megapode, the Sparrowhawk, the Glossy Swiftlet, crocodiles and water monitors.

    [​IMG]
    Advertisement: Replay Ad
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    Ads by ZINC



    The islands are Tillanchong - which will host targets for Tube-Launched Land Attack Missiles (T-LAMs) from the navy's submarines and warships - Trinkat, Trek and the Isle of Man.

    Narcondam Island in the northeast Andamans is also expected to be used for installation of more sensors to make it a high-powered "listening post". The island became the centre of a controversy after the navy put up a radar station there because it is home to what ornithologists call a rare species of bird named the "Narcondam Hornbill".

    Ironically, to the dismay of environmentalists, the navy has two warships named after two of the islands that are in its crosshairs: the INS Tillanchang was part of the fleet till the government transferred (or gifted) it to the Maldives. The INS Trinkat continues to be part of the fleet.

    The navy last tested its missiles in Tillanchong in 2008. When it asked for permission to use the island as a firing range and for target practice, the UPA government had rejected the request.

    In October 2012, then environment minister, the Congress's Jayanthi Natarajan, said the rejection was a "very, very difficult decision because it involves national security, and a missile range is important".

    The navy has a forward operating base at INS Kardip in Kamorta in the Nicobar group of islands.

    Defence ministry sources said the navy, the army and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will use Tillanchong to test Russian-origin T-LAMs called Klubs, the India-Russia joint-venture missile, Brahmos, and possibly the delivery vehicles for a secretive strategic missile capable of carrying nuclear warheads fired from submarines sometimes referred to in official literature as the Sagarika, the K-15 and the K-9.

    Nuclear warheads are not used in tests. The army and the navy want to test conventional weapons with live warheads.

    The army tested the Brahmos missile, which has a range of 290km, this month.

    Military sources say they emphasise the importance of testing the missiles because "we have not been able to expend our annual practice allowance for many years". Each weapon in the arsenal comes with an "annual practice allowance" that is a small percentage - usually three to five per cent of the total number held - that has to be fired before the weapons are used in actual hostilities or before the end of their expiry date.

    The Klub T-LAMs, the tube-missiles which can be fired to attack targets on land from under water, are imported from Russia. They are now standard in all modern warships of the navy but have not been fired in Indian conditions. They have been tested only in Russia.

    This complicates matters because, first, the weapons could not be tested in conditions in which they are likely to be used. Second, the crew do not get enough practice.

    "The business of war is expensive," explained one officer. "We have to keep firing to learn to shoot straight."

    Environmentalists say increasing militarisation of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands is leading to clashes between soldiers and traditional livelihood systems like the Nicobarese "tuhets". But military officials argue that not only are readiness and training important, it is also difficult to find uninhabited spaces within Indian territory.

    The possibility of missiles missing the islands during practice also has to be taken into account in designating targets. Mercantile traffic in the Bay of Bengal around the Andamans is less than that around the Lakshadweep and Minicoy Islands on India's west coast. The bulk of the traffic through the Bay of Bengal passes south of Nicobar to the Straits of Malacca.

    http://www.telegraphindia.com/1150521/jsp/frontpage/story_21266.jsp#.Vas4UpoViM8
     
  10. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    [​IMG]

    Narcondam and Coco Island - radar coverage
     
  11. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    [​IMG]


    Trinket, Trek, Isle of Man and Tillanchong groupf of Islands
     
  12. Prashant12

    Prashant12 Regular Member

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    Govt for green nod to expansion of naval air station in Andaman and Nicobar islands

    Govt recommends green nod for expansion of Indian naval air station NAS Shibpur in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands region, which is home to important species of birds and mammals


    [​IMG]
    Apart from forest clearance, the project also needs environmental, coastal and wildlife clearance. Photo: Shamik Bag
    New Delhi: The expert forest panel of the Union environment ministry has recommended a green clearance for expansion of NAS Shibpur, an Indian naval air station in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands region, which is home to several important species of birds and mammals.

    Besides strengthening India’s security and surveillance capabilities over the northern group of islands in Andaman and Nicobar, the project is also expected to give a boost to infrastructure.

    Andaman and Nicobar Islands are highly important for India from both security and strategic perspectives. They are at the entrance to the Malacca Strait, the world’s busiest shipping route.

    With China strengthening its navy and increasing its influence in the Indian Ocean Region, India has taken up the task of strengthening its defence capabilities in the area over the past few years. In 2012, the Indian Navy had commissioned the naval air station ‘Baaz’ at Campbell Bay on the Great Nicobar Island. It is the southernmost air station of the Indian armed forces.

    The Shibpur project involves diversion of around 100 hectares (about 20,018 trees) of forest land for expansion of its runway.

    NAS Shibpur is on the northern most inhabited island in North Andaman. The airfield provides sustained detached operations for the India Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard Dornier, MI 8 and Chetak aircraft.

    The project was discussed during the recent meeting of the environment ministry’s Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) on 25 April.

    As per the site inspection report of the environment ministry’s regional office in Chennai, which was considered by FAC, the present runway length is 1,000 metres, where only a few aircraft can land, but after expansion the length can be extended to 3,000 metres for operation of wide-bodied defence and civilian planes.

    “This will not only help towards development of the northern Andaman habitat but will also help during calamity. Strategically also, the runway extension is important,” the site report had said.

    As per the minutes of the FAC meeting, which were reviewed by Mint, the panel was informed that the “extension of runway will not only consolidate the security cover over northern group of islands but will also assist in rapid development of civil infrastructure which will immensely benefit the local civil population”.

    “The Navy officials emphasized the strategic importance and the disaster relief impact of the project,” the minutes said. It was also stressed during the meeting that the project does not involve any displacement of people.

    The local forest officials, in their report, also recommended the project. “...the area has immense strategic importance to enhance the security of Andaman and Nicobar Islands as well as our as country,” they said. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration also recommended the project on the same grounds.

    FAC, after hearing the “Navy officials and taking into consideration the strategic importance of the proposal recommended the project” for forest clearance. The recommendation will now have to be accepted or denied by the Anil Madhav Dave-led ministry of environment, forests and climate change (MoEFCC). The environment ministry rarely overturns recommendations of the expert panel and with the project being a strategic project it is expected to be approved.

    Animals found in the area include mammals like the north Andaman horseshoe bat, jungle cat, barking deer, spotted deer, dolphin, elephant, wild pig, Andaman Island spiny shrew, blue whale, false killer whale and sperm whale. It also has reptiles like the monitor lizard, leatherback turtle and saltwater crocodile.

    The area is also house to birds like Wilson’s storm-petrel, red-tailed tropicbird, spot-billed pelican, red-footed booby, little egret, Andaman teal, black eagle, grey francolin, peregrine falcon, Andaman cuckoo dove, Siberian blue robin, Olive-backed sunbird, large Andaman Drongo and others.

    There are 20,018 trees in the area which is sought for diversion and they would be required to be removed for the expansion.

    To compensate for them, FAC stated that 100 hectares of degraded forest land will be identified and be earmarked for compensatory afforestation. “The degraded forest land will be planted preferably at the rate of 1000 per hectare for compensating the trees lost,” FAC said.

    Apart from forest clearance, the project also needs environmental, coastal and wildlife clearance. It needs wildlife clearance as the project area is just 3.5 kilometres from the Saddle Peak National Park.


    http://www.livemint.com/Politics/er...o-expansion-of-naval-air-station-in-Anda.html
     
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  13. HariPrasad-1

    HariPrasad-1 Senior Member Senior Member

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    I have a question for long long time. I have seen some photos of Andamn islands. Some are very small and parted by a small distance. Can we fill some soil and make them a large stretch of land useful for all military purposes like chinese artificial island? If possible, I am fully in favor of doing that.
     
  14. Krusty

    Krusty Senior Member Senior Member

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    Land reclamation is always possible to increase the area of the islands. I have no clue why india doesn't push forward with reclamation for strategic islands. Or maybe they consider that the area is enough for whatever military requirement. Not sure though.
     
  15. captscooby81

    captscooby81 Senior Member Senior Member

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    That should be the easy way of making more space for creating defence infrastructure or else look at these jokers on the name of environmentalist freaking for some 200 Rare birds and stopping construction of base in island which will be the crucial most part of india s first line of defence in the IOR region when the chinese start an war

    Well procrastination which is something we are very good at we will only awake when the entire BoB is taken over by the chinese strong of pearls . I wont be surprised if china creates an artificial island out of now where to check us in A&N also ..Still our babudom will be moving files with all bottle neck departments ,wildlife my foot ..Do the chinese will care about wildlife when they will launch their missiles on our islands in A&N ????:rage:

     
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  16. Adioz

    Adioz Irregular member

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    Well, Andaman and Nicobar islands have larger islands like Car Nicobar, so land reclamation is not absolutely essential. In places such as Agatti island (Lakshadweep) where there is no other choice, they are doing land reclamation to extend the airstrip's length, similar to what China is doing. Car Nicobar is a very big island, and a lot of work can be done to increase the defense capability of that island, without resorting to land reclamation.

    We need to come up with clearly demarcated ecological and military zones in Andaman and Nicobar. In the military zones, Defense infrastructure and facilities should be given priority over and above environmental concerns. This current arrangement of a case-by-case basis of environmental clearance for military projects should be phased out. Once that happens, a lot of projects can be expedited.
     
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