2 mountain divisions to counter China

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by neo29, Nov 22, 2010.

  1. neo29

    neo29 Senior Member Senior Member

    Dec 1, 2009
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    With China's "assertive" behaviour showing no signs of abating, India is fast-tracking new troop formations for the North-East. Apart from the two new infantry divisions, this includes the interesting experiment of new Arunachal and Sikkim Scouts battalions.

    Defence ministry officials said the two fresh infantry mountain divisions, with 1,260 officers and 35,011 soldiers, should be "fully-operational with specialised equipment" by next year. Similarly, the first battalion of Arunachal Scouts will be up and running by May 2011.

    While the new 56 Division has its HQ in Zakama (Nagaland) under the Dimapur-based 3 Corps, the 71 Division at Missamari (Assam) falls in the operational command of the Tezpur-based 4 Corps. Both the new formations are primarily tasked with the defence of Arunachal Pradesh.

    "The two divisions are now virtually in place, with officers and soldiers already being posted for them. They are in process of getting new equipment, which includes armoured personnel carriers and light howitzers," said an official.

    While this conventional troop-building continues, the experiment of Arunachal Scouts is also underway with the training of its first battalion beginning at Assam Regimental Centre at Shillong earlier this month.

    "As of now, the government has approved one battalion of Arunachal Scouts. Sikkim Scouts is in the pipeline," said an officer. Patented on the Ladakh Scouts, which was elevated to a full-fledged infantry regiment after its sterling role in dislodging Pakistani intruders during the 1999 Kargil conflict, Arunachal Scouts are also based on the "sons of the soil" concept.

  3. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

    Oct 16, 2010
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    Delhi, India, India
    Local scouts. Obvious and good decision.
  4. captonjohn

    captonjohn Regular Member

    Oct 11, 2010
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    Good move though but not sufficient. This must be taken as a start NOT the end of defense strengthening along borders.
  5. Parthy

    Parthy Air Warrior Senior Member

    Aug 18, 2010
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    It is supposed to be M777 howitzer, I guess.. Any dates proposed like when the contract will be signed for this???
  6. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

    May 10, 2010
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    Bihar, BanGalore , India
    A good move but we need to do more and quickly. we have not very good air defence in N-east area and need to work on priority basis . Our logistics and infrastructure should also be enhanced to allow rapid troops deployment . Still no news about procurement of artillery as they are very much needed in case we face any disturbances from China.
  7. Patriot

    Patriot Senior Member Senior Member

    Apr 11, 2010
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    Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India
    India deploys new border divisions to counter massive Chinese advantages

    BY: tibetanreview

    As China’s belligerence in terms of Kashmir policy and claim over Arunachal Pradesh grows despite increased bilateral trade relations and common interests in climate and trade talks at global forums, India is stepping up its efforts to strengthen its border security. It has now deployed two new army divisions – comprising more than 36,000 men – to defend its north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh.

    Apart from adopting a new policy of regarding Kashmir as a disputed territory, China recently took to calling Arunachal Pradesh as southern Tibet to strengthen its territorial assertion over the state.

    The Times of India Nov 23 cited Indian Defence ministry officials as saying the two infantry mountain divisions included 1260 officers and 35011 soldiers, and that it will be fully “operational with specialized equipment” by 2011.

    Similarly, the first battalion of Arunachal Scouts, a paramilitary force, will be up and running by May 2011. A Sikkim Scouts will also be set up. The two mountain-fit, son-of-the-soil forces will help the army protect the Sino-Indian border in the two states.

    BBC News online Nov 23 said the new, 56th Division will be based in the nearby state of Nagaland to guard the eastern flank of Arunachal Pradesh from Chinese attack through Burma. The other new formation, the 71st Division, will be based in Assam to protect central Arunachal Pradesh.

    Already the Indian Fifth Mountain Division guards western Arunachal Pradesh while another division is responsible for protecting the eastern part of the state.

    The report cited a staff officer with the Indian Army Chief General VK Singh, who pushed very hard for the new divisions, as saying the new formation was India’s response to the “huge Chinese build-up” in Tibet over the last three to four years.

    India has also cited China’s “superb” communications system, especially after the completion of the Lhasa train line in 2006, and its far superior airlift capability as reasons for the border-strengthening moves.

    The BBC report said the formation of the two new divisions means that India’s deployments in the eastern sector of its border with Chinese ruled Tibet now matches the five army divisions that existed in 1986-87, when the two countries nearly went to war. It added that’s both the sides scaled down their deployments after they signed a “Peace and Tranquillity” treaty in 1993 as part of a confidence-building package.

    Chinese reaction
    While China is yet to officially react to the Indian move, its official Global Times newspaper Nov 23 cited Chinese experts as dismissing what it called “the defiant move” as a misstep on New Delhi’s behalf. “Such a move aims to add chips to the upcoming China-India talks on border disputes,” it quoted Wang Dehua, an expert on India at the Shanghai International Studies Center, as saying.

    It seems that “those hawkish groups in New Delhi are getting above themselves after the US voiced support for India’s bid to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council,” Wang was further quoted as saying.

    It also cited Sun Shihai, an expert on Asia Pacific studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, as saying, “By making such a move, India showed its unwillingness to make a concession during the demarcation talks.”

    China and India are to hold the 14th meeting between their special representatives on border issues on Nov 29-30. China’s official Xinhua news agency recalled that the two countries had designated special representatives for demarcation work in 2003 and signed a political guideline on demarcation during Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit to India in 2005.Their last meeting was held last year in New Delhi, with the two sides agreeing to push forward the framework of the talk process and to make common efforts to keep peace and calm in their border areas.

  8. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

    Apr 17, 2009
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    So, to China it is a 'misstep'?

    It good they have got the message!
  9. civfanatic

    civfanatic Retired Moderator

    Sep 8, 2009
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    Pardon me for my ignorance, but what is the difference between a Mountain Division and a regular Infantry Division?

    IIRC, a standard IA division has 15,000 combat troops and 8,000 support elements. What are the materiel differences between the different divisions?
  10. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

    Aug 20, 2010
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    Gangtok, Sikkim, India
    I am glad that government cleared the bill for Sikkim Scouts. Finally we get to be a part of official battle in case things go wrong. :)

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