Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Indian Arms Build Up Prelude to South Asian Arms Race

India is planning to raise its military budget by 50% to almost $40 billion, making military expenditure 3% of the annual gross domestic product (GDP), the Indian defense minister said. In contrast to India's planned defense expenditures, Pakistan's entire 2009-10 budget amounts to little over $30 billion.

"Our current defense spending is lower than 2% [of GDP]...and it should be at least 3%," A. K. Antony said at a meeting with top military commanders on Tuesday, without specifying a time-frame. India raised its defense spending in February by 10% to $26.5 billion for the fiscal year 2008-2009, but it still fell below 2% of GDP for the first time in at least a decade.

India's neighbors and long-term rivals, Pakistan and China, allocate around 3.5% and 4.3% of GDP to defense, respectively. The minister said top priority must be given to the modernization of the Indian Armed Forces and half of the defense budget should be allocated for the purchase of new military equipment.

Currently two-thirds of India's budget is allocated for military, paramilitary, police, various security forces and debt servicing. That leaves one-third for everything else, including infrastructure development projects, education, healthcare, poverty alleviation, and various human services. This new arms buildup by India will leave even less for what India needs most: to lift hundreds of millions of its citizens from abject poverty, hunger, squalor and disease.

Such an arms buildup by India is sure to fuel an arms race that South Asians can ill afford with widespread abject poverty, hunger, malnutrition and very low levels of human development.

The human cost of this unfortunate escalation by India will mainly be born by its most vulnerable citizens who will probably lose the few crumbs of bread they are forced to live on now. It will continue the horrible sanitation situation that forces two-thirds of Indians to defecate in the open that spreads disease and kills millions of various diseases each year.

India has failed to use a period of high economic growth to lift tens of millions of people out of poverty, falling far short of China’s record in protecting its population from the ravages of chronic hunger, United Nations officials said on Tuesday. Last year, British Development Minister Alexander contrasted the rapid growth in China with India's economic success - highlighting government figures that showed the number of poor people had dropped in the one-party communist state by 70% since 1990 but had risen in the world's biggest democracy by 5%.

The World Hunger Index of 88 countries published by IFPRI last year ranked India at 66 while Pakistan was slightly better at 61 and Bangladesh slightly worse at 70.

In the context of unprecedented economic growth (9-10 percent annually) and national food security, over 60 percent of Indian children are wasted, stunted, underweight or a combination of the above. As a result, India ranks number 62 along with Bangladesh at 67 in the PHI (Poverty Hunger Index)ranking out of a total of 81 countries. Both nations are included among the low performing countries in progress towards MDG1 (Millennium Development Goals) with countries such as Nepal (number 58), Ethiopia (number 60), or Zimbabwe (number 74).

Pakistan at 45 ranks well ahead of India at 62, and it is included in the medium performing countries. PHI is a new composite indicator – the Poverty and Hunger Index (PHI) – developed to measure countries’ performance towards achieving MDG1 on halving poverty and hunger by 2015. The PHI combines all five official MDG1 indicators, including a) the proportion of population living on less than US$ 1/day, b) poverty gap ratio, c) share of the poorest quintile in national income or consumption, d) prevalence of underweight in children under five years of age, and d) the proportion of population undernourished.

The stinging criticism of India’s performance comes only two weeks after the Congress party-led alliance was overwhelmingly voted back into office. Its leaders had campaigned strongly on their achievement of raising India’s economic growth to 9 per cent and boosting rural welfare. With the exception of Kerala, the situation in India is far worse than the Human Development Index suggests. According to economist Amartya Sen, who won the Nobel Prize for his work on hunger, India has fared worse than any other country in the world at preventing recurring hunger.

India might be an emerging economic power, but it is way behind Pakistan, Bangladesh and even Afghanistan in providing basic sanitation facilities, a key reason behind the death of 2.1 million children under five in the country.

Lizette Burgers, chief of water and environment sanitation of the Unicef, recently said India is making progress in providing sanitation but it lags behind most of the other countries in South Asia. A former Indian minister Mr Raghuvansh Prasad Singh told the BBC that more than 65% of India's rural population defecated in the open, along roadsides, railway tracks and fields, generating huge amounts of excrement every day.

Economically resurgent India is witnessing a rapid unfolding of a female genocide in the making across all castes and classes, including the upper caste rich and the educated. The situation is particularly alarming among upper-caste Hindus in some of the urban areas of Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, specially in parts of Punjab, where there are only 300 girls for every 1,000 boys, according to Laura Turquet, ActionAid's women's rights policy official.

I see hunger and poverty and lack of opportunity as the root cause of most of the ethnic, religious and other forms of violence. The situation is further complicated when nations with the largest number of poor and hungry choose to spend more on military than on fighting poverty, hunger and disease.

In fact, letting millions die of hunger each year, is what Amatya Sen calls "quiet violence", a form of ongoing brutality that claims far more lives than all of the other causes of violence combined.

Neither Pakistan nor India can or should continue their misguided arms race, with India using China as its excuse, and Pakistan citing India's current arms buildup, the largest in its history. In Poverty-Hunger Index(PHI), designed to measure progress toward UN's Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), China, ranked 31, is closest to achieving these goals, followed by laggards such as Pakistan at 45, India at 62, and Bangladesh at 67. And clearly, India, lagging behind both China and Pakistan in terms of basic social indicators of hunger and poverty, is fueling this crazy South Asian arms race. India continues to show a total lack of leadership on this front.

The South Asian rivals need to recognize, in words and in deeds, that their people are their biggest resource, who must be developed and made much more productive to make the nations more competitive and powerful economically, politically and militarily.

Related Links:

Challenges of Indian Democracy

India's Female Genocide

World Military Spending

Pakistan Military Business

India-Pakistan Military Balance

Chuck Yeager on Pakistan Air Force


Anonymous said...

With neighbours like pakistan and bangladesh and china bloody india spend money in defense.

However for the first time the economist manmohan singh has gone on social cause, inspite of having the budget deficit of moppting 80 billion dollar in current rate.

Positive side of that would be to address the concerns raised by this author and will also trigger the consumption based revival of demand to bring the economy to growth path of 9%

Vikram said...

I appreciate your concern for India's suffering masses. But correlating their well-being with defense spending is naive. After all, the percentage of defence spending wasnt this high before and India still struggled with human development, didnt it ? Understanding the real reasons for India's poor performance in health and education for a large section of its population requires more in-depth studies and research.

For example, you mentioned malnutrition and children's health. Well if you read Purnima Menon's work on malnutrition in India you will realize that the real reason for it being so widespread is the lack of education and information. Putting more money into it will not make a huge difference.

India has a huge and diverse border, much of it along unfriendly neighbors with whom it has outstanding border disputes, in addition to a substantial coast line. Protecting and patrolling such a country effectively is going to cost money.

I am in no way advocating unnecessary defence spending or any kinds of arms race, only pointing out the practical issues involved and pointing out your naive (but often made) correlation.

Raj said...

So what do you want India to do. Not spend money to defend itself. Surrender before terrorists like Pakistani Parliament did before Taliban.
As soon as Pakistan stops it terror against India, India can stop spending money on defence. India is willing to resume peace talks only pakistain has stop terror. There will be no peace between the two countries as long as pakistan continues to support terror against India.
BTW providing security is Indian Govt's first priority. Everythig else like healthcare, education, sanitation is secondary.

Riaz Haq said...

"Terrorism" is the bogey that will drive you bankrupt and insane, if you do not get hold of yourself.

Forget about China. It's already left you in the dust. Worry about the Taliban hordes, instead.

You should be thanking Pakistan for fighting the Taliban whose next step would be New Delhi in the unlikely event that Pakistani military fails to stop them in their tracks.

You will then have to deal with the progeny of Moghuls, Ghauris, Ghaznavis and Abdalis armed with the sophisticated weapons they capture from Pakistan to enslave you once again.

Raj said...

You are contradicting yourself.
On one side you are saying that India should not spend money on defence and the other side you are saying that Taliban can take over India.
Don't think that India fear of terror from Pakistan is ligitimate.

Riaz Haq said...

Just talking terrorism to buy a lot of expensive toys for your generals is not the solution and shows a basic lack of understanding about fighting terror.

The kind of armament you are building, such as big nuclear and conventional force and the "blue-water" navy will be useless in fighting the Taliban.

You Indian arms buildup and troops concentrations on Pak border are a major distraction for Pakistani military. By removing such distraction, you will be doing yourself a favor, letting Pak military concentrate on defeating the Talibs.

Anonymous said...

India has a great geo-political advantage of being surrounded by ocean, mountains and small neighbors. Only way it can be threatened if China puts its army in Nepal or u.s. invades from sea both unlikely scenarios. Increase spending is unlikely to change its equation with Pakistan because of nuclear weapons but likely make other large countries uncomfortable and might open strategic partnership for Pakistan.

Anonymous said...


Your analysis of India’s defense outlay as a build up to an arms race is myopic. Although India has marked 34%, not 40%, increase in its defense budget this year most of it’s not going to be spent on weapons. A large chunk of the defense budget is declared to be spent on increased pensions for the wounded and the retired soldiers. For the balance, you can factor in the inflation and it's not a significant jump in defense outlay. Moreover, when a country like India is surrounded by shining beacons of near-failed states, modernizing its police and paramilitary forces is necessary. Despite threats, India spends less on defense in % GDP than that spent by Pakistan or China.
Mr. Haq, like many in Pakistan, has ignored the 144% increase in India's budget directed towards social development and inclusive growth. It plans to implement massive pro-people schemes like rural employment guarantee, rural infrastructure improvement and urban renewal projects. It’s a bold move given the mounting national fiscal deficit. When Pakistan or Bangladesh compete to match India’s out lay in social development the prelude to peace and prosperity in South Asia will begin.

Anonymous said...


“You should be thanking Pakistan for fighting the Taliban whose next step would be New Delhi in the unlikely event that Pakistani military fails to stop them in their tracks".

- You spoke like Mr. Musharraf when he used to do his rounds for getting the next foreign aid paycheck. Riaz, no one is doing anyone a favor. Pakistan is fighting an existential battle against its own creation at a heavy human cost. Pakistan’s neighbors can breathe easy only wen Pakistan also attacks the Punjabi terrorist groups which are groomed to graduate thousands of militants every year.

"You will then have to deal with the progeny of Moghuls, Ghauris, Ghaznavis and Abdalis armed with the sophisticated weapons they capture from Pakistan to enslave you once again"

- It’s unlikely to happen in 21st century. Not because of the possibility of Pakistan not falling to the Taliban but, the US/NATO are more scared of that eventuality. As a hypothesis if that ever happens, the Pakistani generals and the elite will be first to flee the country. They’ll be sharing the nuclear codes and arms dump sites with the US in return for green cards in Western countries. The bearded pin-heads scrambling to lay hands on sophisticated weaponry to once again enslave others is a myth found in propaganda videos.

Anonymous said...


“Just talking terrorism to buy a lot of expensive toys for your generals is not the solution and shows a basic lack of understanding about fighting terror.”

- You’re preaching to the wrong choir. According to the Pentagon documents the benignant billions of aid dollars poured into Pakistan's coffers over the last decade have ended up on the most modern weaponry – combat aircrafts, laser-guided kits, anti-ship missiles, air-to-air missiles, nuclear weapons – for use against India. It’s Pakistan, not India, which has equipped itself to fight the traditional enemy under the cloak of fighting terrorism.

Jeech said...

Bhutan is the only country out of 8, India has good relationship with. There is no rather another option to Bhutan to have "yes sir" kind of behavior with the militarily might.

How beneficial it is to Indian warriors to keep unfriendly relationship to it's neighbor!! Who cares how many are ding starving there?

Anonymous said...

Riazbhai I am not liking these clever Indian guys also just like you. More they are spending money even more bad for them. Great Pakistan Army is not need money to beat this Indian Army. Pakistan fauji is ten times Indian fauji. Pakistan fauj show what we can do to these guys in 1965. So the money throwing will be foolish. And you say correct thing that China leave India in dust. China is our Great Freind and help us against Indian Army. But they did not helped us in 1971 maybe bcos they are not powerful. But now they help us if these cunning guys do misadventure. China is not doing good in Xinjiang by killing Musalman but inshallah they will not do it much more. But they are all weather freind. Allah will put strenth in Pakistan Army to defeat Taliban. Maybe we can allow some Taliban into India to show how bad Indian Army is. They cannot stop Taliban. This money can be for Kashmir. Brothers and sisters suffer much there. Indian Army scared to fight real army aka Pakistan Army. So they kill Kashmiri brothers and sisters. Coward and cunning!

Riaz Haq said...

Here is an excerpt from Chuck Yeager, the American pilot who was first in breaking the sound barrier:

Chuck Yeager and the Pakistan Air Force
An Excerpt from Yeager,
the Autobiography of General (Retd.) Chuck E. Yeager (USAF)

When we arrived in Pakistan in 1971, the political situation between the Pakistanis and Indians was really tense over Bangladesh, or East Pakistan, as it was known in those days, and Russia was backing India with tremendous amounts of new airplanes and tanks. The U.S. and China were
backing the Pakistanis. My job was military advisor to the Pakistani airforce, headed by Air Marshal Rahim Khan, who had been trained in Britain by the Royal Air Force, and was the first Pakistani pilot to exceed the speed of sound. He took me around to their different fighter groups and I met their pilots, who knew me and were really pleased that I was there.

They had about five hundred airplanes, more than half of them Sabres and 104 Starfighters, a few B-57 bombers, and about a hundred Chinese MiG-19s. They were really good, aggressive dogfighters and proficient in gunnery and air combat tactics. I was damned impressed. Those guys just lived and breathed flying. One of my first jobs there was to help them put U.S. Sidewinders on their Chinese MiGs, which were 1.6 Mach twin-engine airplanes that carried three thirty-millimeter canons. Our government furnished them with the rails for Sidewinders. They bought the missiles and all the checkout equipment that went with them, and it was one helluva interesting experience watching
their electricians wiring up American missiles on a Chinese MiG. I worked with their squadrons and helped them develop combat tactics. The Chinese MiG was one hundred percent Chinese-built and was made for only one hundred hours of flying before it had to be scrapped - a disposable fighter good for one hundred strikes. In fairness, it was an older
airplane in their inventory, and I guess they were just getting rid of them. They delivered spare parts, but it was a tough airplane to work on; the Pakistanis kept it flying for about 130 hours.

Copyright © 1985 by Yeager Inc

Riaz Haq said...

Chuck Yeager contd:

War broke out only a couple of months after we had arrived, in late November 1971, when India attacked East Pakistan. The battle lasted only three days before East Pakistan fell. India's intention was to annex East Pakistan and claim it for themselves. But the Pakistanis counter-attacked. Air Marshal Rahim Khan laid a strike on the four closest Indian air fields in the western part of India, and wiped out a lot of equipment. At that point, Indira Gandhi began moving her forces toward West Pakistan. China moved in a lot of equipment, while Russia backed the Indians all the way. So, it really became a kind of surrogate war - the Pakistanis, with U.S. training and equipment, versus the Indians, mostly Russian-trained, flying Soviet airplanes.
The Pakistanis whipped their [Indians'] asses in the sky.
The air war lasted two weeks and the Pakistanis scored a three-to-one kill ratio, knocking out 102 Russian-made
Indian jets and losing thirty-four airplanes of their own. I'm certain about the figures because I went out several times a day in a chopper and counted the wrecks below. I counted wrecks on Pakistani soil, documented them by serial number, identified the components such as engines, rocket
pods, and new equipment on newer planes like the Soviet SU-7
fighter-bomber and the MiG-21 J, their latest supersonic fighter. The Pakistani army would cart off these items for me, and when the war ended, it took two big American Air Force cargo lifters to carry all those parts back to the States for analysis by our intelligence division. I didn't get involved in the actual combat because that would've been too touchy, but I did fly around and pick up shot-down Indian pilots and take them back to prisoner-of-war camps for questioning. I interviewed them about the equipment they had been flying and the tactics their Soviet advisers taught them to use. I wore a uniform or flying suit all the time, and it was amusing when those Indians saw my name tag and asked, "Are you the Yeager who broke the sound barrier?" They couldn't believe I was in Pakistan or understand what I was doing there. I told them, "I'm the
American Defense Rep here. That's what I'm doing."

India flew numerous raids against the Pakistani air fields with brand new SU-7 bombers being escorted in with MiG 21s. On one of those raids, they clobbered my small Beech Queen Air that had U.S. Army markings and a big American flag painted on the tail. I had it parked at the Islamabad
airport, and I remember sitting on my front porch on the second day of the war, thinking that maybe I ought to move that airplane down to the Iranian border, out of range of the Indian bombers, when the damned air-raid siren went off, and a couple of Indian jets came streaking in overhead. A moment later, I saw a column of black smoke rising from the air field. My Beech Queen was totaled. It was the Indian way of giving Uncle Sam the finger.

Anonymous said...

You said, “Just talking terrorism to buy a lot of expensive toys for your generals is not the solution and shows a basic lack of understanding about fighting terror.”

- Riaz, you’re preaching to the wrong choir. According to Pentagon documents the benignant billions of aid dollars poured into Pakistan's coffers over the last decade have ended up on the most modern weaponry – nuclear weapons, combat aircraft, laser-guided kits, anti-ship missiles, air-to-air missiles, – for potential use against India. It’s Pakistan, not India, which is buying expensive toys with ‘borrowed’ money under the cloak of fighting terror.

Anonymous said...

Riazbhai why you are not putting my writings on your blog? You are putting all these Indian guys writings but not mine.
PAF is worlds best. It is our pride. If cunning Russians were not helping India we will never loss East Pakistan. Army is also great.

Anonymous said...

Zardari admitted what the world knows anyway - that Pakistan is a terror sponsoring state. See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/5779916/Pakistani-president-Asif-Zardari-admits-creating-terrorist-groups.html

And you complain that India is spending too much money on defense?

Also it is ridiculous to argue that you are doing India and rest of the world a favour, by fighting Jihadi terrorists that are originating from your own country and ethnic groups. Anyway you are not doing this dirty job of "war on terror" because of love of peace or humanity. Terrorism has become a pain in Pakistan's own ass and also Pakistan gets abundant money from infidels for doing this...

Madhavi said...

There are some facts about India's military postur that go beyond the budget hike figures. A large portion of the proposed budget will be spent on meeting the 6th Pay Commission reccos. According to the CIA FactBook India's rank among other nations on Defense spending as a percent of GDP is 66th (this figure is for year 2006). whereas for the same year Pakistan and sri Lanka ranked 55th and 63rd respectively.
India's Ministry of Defense has actually returned Rs. 7,007 crore as the amount that it was not able to spend. Does the Armed Forces of any other country do that?
Budget figures need to contextualized for accurate analysis.

Jeech said...

@Madhavi, GDP has increased since India has left it's independent position and has jumped into the American lap. GDP generally increases with the flow of foreign money in name of investments. And the most capricious investment would stock-exchange... from which you withdraw investments within a day.

Pakistan's GDP has been at the top in it's history the last few years because of the "contemporary money" Pakistan traded against it's sovereignty(/sarcastic).

Anyhow, whatever is the cause of that big GDB rate in India, the rate of poverty is still unshakable. How do you compare this rate to the rate of military increase? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Riaz, this post just proves that you are not just aesthetically challenged but intellectually challenged as well. My friend India's budgetary allocation towards education is twice its defence budget. pakistan spends twice the amount of money it spends on education towards defence. give us a break. people like you are dead weight on this planet. i hope someday we can bunch people like you together and deport you to someother planet

Anonymous said...

"Riazbhai I am not liking these clever Indian guys also just like you. More they are spending money even more bad for them. Great Pakistan Army is not need money to beat this Indian Army. Pakistan fauji is ten times Indian fauji. "

Hero--you have short term memory problem for sure.Have you forgetten what Indira Gandhi did to you in 1971-you were bought to your knees. I will not go to details as that war is one of the total annihilations in the recent times. Kargil is another example when your best troops could not defend the PEAKs-shame- from ordinary India soldiers climbing from bases. Most of them were shot in their eyes -both of them from far of distance.
Riaz--you said Taliban the progeny of Ghauri or Ghaznavi will enslave India--I am not sure if that will happen-As long they nail Pakistan army as many they can get-it makes the easy for India to smile for the dirty deeds of your army. You must keep your pride in your army in check because if another 1971 happens-you may not be able to take it!!! Similar things have happened in the past-Pakistan shouts the name of Gods and boasts -India does the nailing and shows-read history of the last fifty years.

Jaydev,India said...

I hope this is really useful..
Clarification from Christian Fair(RAND Corp)..just hear from her about what she thinks about Pak state:


Riaz Haq said...

US is encouraging and actively supporting India's arms buildup in its pursuit of business for its nuclear and arms exporters and to attempt to counter the growing Chinese power in Asia and the world. Here's an NPR report on Hilary Clinton's recent visit to New Delhi:

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was rebuffed by India on climate change issues, but she finalized agreements Monday that will clear the way for American companies to sell arms to India and build nuclear power plants there.

Some analysts say the Indians got what they wanted from the exchange, without giving much ground on issues such as climate change.

In a joint appearance, Clinton and Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna announced that India has designated two sites where U.S. companies would have exclusive rights to develop nuclear power plants. That concession could be worth as much as $10 billion to U.S. manufacturers.

Clinton and Krishna also announced an agreement that would allow the U.S. to monitor how India uses any military hardware or technology sold to it by the United States. The deal was needed before U.S. defense contractors could sell certain items to India, trade that could be worth as much as $30 billion.

U.S. Arms For An Indian Military Buildup

Zia Mian, a professor at Princeton University, says the arms deal comes as India is in the middle of a massive military buildup. "It goes way beyond just modernizing what they already had, in that India now sees itself as a world power," Mian says. "Every U.S. and European military contractor is lining up to sell them weapons."

On climate change, Evan Feigenbaum, a deputy assistant secretary of state for South Asia during the Bush administration, says officials didn't expect to win India over to the proposition that it needs to accept a cap on polluting emissions.

Feigenbaum, now a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, says it is important for the U.S. to show that it can manage disagreements with India in a productive way. He says the two nations can demonstrate that they can work together on some aspects of climate change, even if they don't agree on major issues.

In the joint statement issued by the U.S. and India after the talks, Clinton and Krishna appeared to be aiming for that. The statement said the two sides had agreed to collaborate on "transformative and innovative technologies ... including solar and other renewable energy, clean coal and energy efficiency."

Mian says India has a point in refusing to cap its pollution emissions.

"The U.S. has much greater leeway in reducing domestic emissions. Increasing efficiency here would reduce [worldwide] pollution by more than all of India's emissions for the next several years."

Mian says the Indians have indicated they would be happy to work with U.S. companies on developing energy technologies. "The U.S. needs to develop these technologies for itself, anyway. Why not say we'll make an investment in research into low-cost energy production in India?"

Beyond Counterterrorism

One key item on the bilateral agenda with India is counterterrorism. In the joint statement, the two countries reaffirmed their commitment to cooperating against terrorism, and Clinton urged India to cooperate with its rival, Pakistan, to fight terrorist groups.

But Mian says he thinks the U.S. should urge India to engage with Pakistan in other areas, including trade. He says people in the two countries need to see the benefits of cooperation in other ways, if tensions are to be reduced.

Mian says he believes the U.S. sees the biggest role for India as a balance for the rising power of China in Asia, and as an ally in dealing with Pakistan if that nuclear-armed nation were to fall apart.

Feigenbaum says he thinks the U.S. needs to look at a more global partnership with India, to work with India on resolving problems in areas where its influence has been growing, such as Africa, the Persian Gulf and East Asia.

Anonymous said...

Mr Riaz

You stop worrying about our problems.

You are worrying about our poor is just to show case how much you care about Indian poor. But the fact remains that you cant spend as much as we do and we are acquiring lethal weapons which you cant.

This worrying scene is just to cover up things.

You dont have to worry about our poor people. We are spending our own money on getting lethal weapons. We are not begging outside for money.

So stop advicing others. We are a developing nation and for sure we will lift our poor people out of poverty. Thanks for your concern. You first concentrate and ask your government to concentrate on lifting poor people of Pakistan.

Jai Hind

anoop said...

"Forget about China. It's already left you in the dust. Worry about the Taliban hordes, instead.

You should be thanking Pakistan for fighting the Taliban whose next step would be New Delhi in the unlikely event that Pakistani military fails to stop them in their tracks.

You will then have to deal with the progeny of Moghuls, Ghauris, Ghaznavis and Abdalis armed with the sophisticated weapons they capture from Pakistan to enslave you once again."

There you go. China's economy is 2.5 trillion dollar big. India's 1.5 trillion dollar. It has not left us in the dust. For your information USA's economy is 13 trillion dollar big. The rate of growth of India and China is head to head,getting closer ever year. In the recent years, China's economy has only out grown India's by 1-2%. Dont go overboard in praising your ally and start looking at things realistically. India has the capacity to effectively Challenge China in every sphere. USA recognises this and wants to develop us as a counter weight. If you are right, then the ppl in the US have gone bonkers. the recent US-Indo nuke deal is the 1st step in the process. USA is not doing us any favors. It wants our support in the future. We would make an effective economic bloc against the Chinese influence.
Stop dreaming about Pakistan and India being equals and kill the monster your "agencies" had created to fight India,which,in turn is hunting its master..

Riaz Haq said...

Here's a BBC report about delays in Indian military modernization:

Among the big defence acquisitions which are at stake, two are for the navy and one for the air force.

The plan to buy an old Russian aircraft carrier and get it refitted to serve the navy for another 30 years continues to defy every new deadline announced for its induction.

French Scorpene submarines, proposed to be built in India, are nowhere near fruition either.

Air force pilots training to operate supersonic jets were overjoyed when in 2004 decades of political inaction were transformed into an order to buy 66 jet trainer aircraft from British Aerospace (BAE).

The Hawk Jet trainers were ordered to help budding pilots improve their skills before moving to a supersonic fighter jet.

In the absence of a trainer aircraft that would help young pilots to graduate from subsonic to supersonic speed, several air force MiG fighters crashed, taking with them budding pilots.

Now all three high profile purchases have been delayed.

From rising costs of the aircraft-carrier Gorshkov to corruption charges delaying the induction of Scorpene submarines to closure of British Aerospace factories - India's military plans have become hostage to delays.

The story of India's planned acquisition of a second aircraft carrier gets more curious by the day.

INS Viraat, the renamed British carrier Hermes, started showing signs of ageing some years ago and the need to procure a second one was felt.

So India's old and dependable military supplier, Russia, came to its aid.

In turn, India rescued Sevmesh shipyard in northern Russia from closure by agreeing to buy Gorshkov and get it refitted - a deal which was hastily agreed in two days.

In this hurry, fine points including the ones relating to what was expected of Russia were overlooked.

But over five years the cost of the deal has risen from $974m to $2.2bn. And it is still rising.

It's like buying a house without its layout design," Mr Rai said.

When the ship was ripped open, it was found that the wiring was ageing and needed to be redone.

A Japanese contractor awarded the rewiring contract found the job overwhelming - given the costs involved - and left. Now a new contractor has been found for the purpose.

Gorshkov's steel plates and machinery, too, needed to be pulled apart and new ones fitted.

The combined total of the work required to refurbish and refit an ageing carrier has contributed to the rising costs.

India remains unhappy with the deal but has little elbow room given the importance of Russia for its military supplies.

With Gorshkov's induction delayed, the government decided to refit its only aircraft carrier, INS Viraat, but it will not be operational till 2015.

That leaves the Indian navy with no aircraft carrier for some time.

At the same time, the navy's attempt to spruce up its submarine strength has not made much headway.

India has 16 diesel-powered subs, but only nine are actually operational.

The nuclear powered submarine Scorpene that India is building with Russian help will also take a few years to sail.

Last month, Indian Defence Minister AK Antony was forced to admit in parliament that plans to increase the number of submarines would be impacted.

Under a 2005 agreement, India was to build six Scorpenes for $3.9bn under license from France.

But there is no sign that the first Scorpene will get delivered in 2012 as agreed.

Another acquisition that has caused sleepless nights for the air force is the Hawk Jet Trainer deal with British Aerospace (BAE).

A much-hyped deal with BAE was signed five years ago under which 66 aircraft were to be supplied - 24 to be bought off the shelf and 42 to be manufactured in Bangalore by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

But now this deal is under threat after BAE closed down two of its factories.


anil said...

It is very funny to hear that india is falling in u.s lap from haq.. Every one knows that how pakistan is trying to get defence aid from pakistan and they are one step closer to fall in the hands of u.s.. Ists well known fact that india increased in defence budjet becoz of countries like pakistan becoz they really dont care about development..The very fact that country like pakistan posses nuclear arsenal shows that how much they are dedicated to military rather than development... i think u guys dont deserve to blame india..

Riaz Haq said...

Last year, Indian Planning Commission member Syeda Hameed acknowledged that India is worse than Bangladesh and Pakistan when it comes to nourishment and is showing little improvement.

Speaking at a conference on "Malnutrition an emergency: what it costs the nation", she said even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during interactions with the Planning Commission has described malnourishment as the "blackest mark".

"I should not compare. But countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are better," she said. The conference was organized last year by the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Ministry of Development of Northeastern Region.

According to India's Family Health Survey, almost 46 percent of children under the age of three are undernourished - an improvement of just one percent in the last seven years. This is only a shade better than Sub-Saharan Africa where about 35 percent of children are malnourished.

India has recently been described as a "nutritional weakling" by a British report.

Riaz Haq said...

Here's traveler-blogger Sean-Paul Kelly talking about lack of sanitation in India:

In my opinion the filth, squalor and all around pollution indicates a marked lack of respect for India by Indians. I don't know how cultural the filth is, but it's really beyond anything I have ever encountered. At times the smells, trash, refuse and excrement are like a garbage dump. Right next door to the Taj Mahal was a pile of trash that smelled so bad, was so foul as to almost ruin the entire Taj experience. Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai to a lesser degree were so very polluted as to make me physically ill. Sinus infections, ear infection, bowels churning was an all to common experience in India. Dung, be it goat, cow or human fecal matter was common on the streets. In major tourist areas filth was everywhere, littering the sidewalks, the roadways, you name it. Toilets in the middle of the road, men urinating and defecating anywhere, in broad daylight. Whole villages are plastic bag wastelands. Roadsides are choked by it. Air quality that can hardly be called quality. Far too much coal and far to few unleaded vehicles on the road. The measure should be how dangerous the air is for one's health, not how good it is. People casually throw trash in the streets, on the roads. The only two cities that could be considered sanitary in my journey were Trivandrum--the capital of Kerala--and Calicut. I don't know why this is. But I can assure you that at some point this pollution will cut into India's productivity, if it already hasn't. The pollution will hobble India's growth path, if that indeed is what the country wants. (Which I personally doubt, as India is far too conservative a country, in the small 'c' sense.)

Riaz Haq said...

Here are "Reflections on India" published by an American traveler-blogger:

First, pollution. In my opinion the filth, squalor and all around pollution indicates a marked lack of respect for India by Indians. I don't know how cultural the filth is, but it's really beyond anything I have ever encountered. At times the smells, trash, refuse and excrement are like a garbage dump. Right next door to the Taj Mahal was a pile of trash that smelled so bad, was so foul as to almost ruin the entire Taj experience. Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai to a lesser degree were so very polluted as to make me physically ill. Sinus infections, ear infection, bowels churning was an all to common experience in India. Dung, be it goat, cow or human fecal matter was common on the streets. In major tourist areas filth was everywhere, littering the sidewalks, the roadways, you name it. Toilets in the middle of the road, men urinating and defecating anywhere, in broad daylight. Whole villages are plastic bag wastelands. Roadsides are choked by it. Air quality that can hardly be called quality. Far too much coal and far to few unleaded vehicles on the road. The measure should be how dangerous the air is for one's health, not how good it is. People casually throw trash in the streets, on the roads. The only two cities that could be considered sanitary in my journey were Trivandrum--the capital of Kerala--and Calicut. I don't know why this is. But I can assure you that at some point this pollution will cut into India's productivity, if it already hasn't. The pollution will hobble India's growth path, if that indeed is what the country wants. (Which I personally doubt, as India is far too conservative a country, in the small 'c' sense.)

The second issue, infrastructure, can be divided into four subcategories: roads, rails and ports and the electrical grid. The electrical grid is a joke. Load shedding is all too common, everywhere in India. Wide swaths of the country spend much of the day without the electricity they actually pay for. With out regular electricity, productivity, again, falls. The ports are a joke. Antiquated, out of date, hardly even appropriate for the mechanized world of container ports, more in line with the days of longshoremen and the like. Roads are an equal disaster. I only saw one elevated highway that would be considered decent in Thailand, much less Western Europe or America. And I covered fully two thirds of the country during my visit. There are so few dual carriage way roads as to be laughable. There are no traffic laws to speak of, and if there are, they are rarely obeyed, much less enforced. A drive that should take an hour takes three. A drive that should take three takes nine. The buses are at least thirty years old, if not older. Everyone in India, or who travels in India raves about the railway system. Rubbish. It's awful. Now, when I was there in 2003 and then late 2004 it was decent. But in the last five years the traffic on the rails has grown so quickly that once again, it is threatening productivity. Waiting in line just to ask a question now takes thirty minutes. Routes are routinely sold out three and four days in advance now, leaving travelers stranded with little option except to take the decrepit and dangerous buses. At least fifty million people use the trains a day in India. 50 million people! Not surprising that waitlists of 500 or more people are common now. The rails are affordable and comprehensive but they are overcrowded and what with budget airlines popping up in India like Sadhus in an ashram the middle and lowers classes are left to deal with the overutilized rails and quality suffers. No one seems to give a shit. Seriously, I just never have the impression that the Indian government really cares. Too interested in buying weapons from Russia, Israel and the US I guess.

anil said...

haq ji .. will u plz stop this shit by blaming one country with some useless information and plz enlighten ur people abt terrorism rather than blaming others.. m so fed up with the bomb blasts reports in pakistan in newspapers daily..its like u people r in shit and throwin it on other countries..

It is fact that india is spending more money in defense but still it cannot stop attacks on its land because of terrorism in pakistan.. so to safeguard its people from such ruthless people it has andshould improve its defence...

Riaz Haq said...

anil: "plz enlighten ur people abt terrorism rather than blaming others.. m so fed up with the bomb blasts reports in pakistan in newspapers daily..its like u people r in shit and throwin it on other countries.."

Neither Pakistan nor India can defeat terrorism or insurgencies by building large conventional forces with expensive "toys" that are useless against a much more nimble and entrepreneurial enemy.

The new scourge of terror and insurgencies can only be dealt with with new, multi-faceted strategies that combine fresh political thinking with new tools and technologies for this century, not replicating the stuff that the Europeans did in the last century.

anoop said...

Pakistan ISI deserves the credit to create the Mujahideens. I know ISI with help from CIA created these Mujahideens but it was ISI who had the brilliant plan to use these militants in Kashmir and poor hapless Afghanistan in the form of Taliban. If Pakistan is not responsible for this I dont know who is!
I hope you read Indian newspapers. Our govt still believes that ISI is pushing infiltrators into Kashmir. ISI has still not learnt its lesson. But, it has to. Eventually.

Riaz Haq said...

anoop: "I hope you read Indian newspapers. Our govt still believes that ISI is pushing infiltrators into Kashmir. ISI has still not learnt its lesson. But, it has to. Eventually. "

It seems to me that Indians (and their western cheerleaders) have been misled in their obsession with the ISI by the Indian government, media and the Indian intelligence agencies.

The power establishment that really runs the affairs of India (Former police chief of Maharashtra SM Mushrif says it is not Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh or Rahul Gandhi) does not want to expose the Hindutva terrorists. One example is the blasts in Samjhauta Express, which the IB said was carried out by Pakistan’s ISI. Mushrif quotes a report in The Times of India that said, “the Centre had blamed the ISI on the basis of the IB’s findings.” However, during a narco-analysis test under Karkare, Lt. Col. Purohit had admitted having supplied the RDX used in the blast. The IB, which draws its power from its proximity to the Prime Minister (its director briefs the PM every morning for half an hour), did not want Karkare’s investigation that blew the cover off the IB’s shenanigans, to continue. And that's what led to the assassination of Karkare during the terror attacks in Mumbai in Nov-Dec 2008.


anoop said...

You are just trying to "change plates" as we say in India. If India is so messed up as you believe then India is going to suffer in the future. Who is responsible for Samjota Train blasts? Purohit,right? He is the head of the organization. Where is he now? In jail.
How was responsible for Mumbai? LeT. Where is LeT's head now? Roaming around freely "motivating" young Muslims to take up Jihad against US,India and Israel.

There is no comparison between India and Pakistan. Pakistan doesn't even act even when there is overwhelming evidence.

If India IB is making trouble for India and Indians then we are the sufferers here. We'll talk about it when Hindu Fanatics start strapping suicide jackets to their bodies and blow themselves up.

If you believe India is really run by IB and RAW (I find it Hilarious) then India is in some deep shit. As long as there are no terror camps in India which train militants to fight Pakistan there is nothing to complain about, is there?
Can we say the same thing about Pakistan?

Sometimes when Indians read statements like you just made from a Pakistani it just makes us stop feeling sorry for Pakistanis when killings happen.

Stick to the topic for once.

ISI has still not learnt its lesson and it'll have to pay for it(The process is already on). Truth alone triumphs, the Upanishads say.

Riaz Haq said...

anoop: "As long as there are no terror camps in India which train militants to fight Pakistan there is nothing to complain about, is there?"

SM Mushrif knows a lot more about the Indian "establishment" than you or I or any casual observer. The killing of Karkare and the absence of any serious independent investigation into the circumstances simply reinforce Mushrif's assertions.

Regardless of the Indian propaganda line, there is absolutely no question that Indian agents are deeply involved in Pakistan's current troubles in NWFP, Baluchistan and elsewhere. One would have to be absolutely blind or highly partisan not to see India's dirty hand at work in Pakistan today.

anoop said...

Fine. India is involved. It is playing this dirty game that Pakistan started.
Pakistan supports Militants in Kashmir. India supports Militants in NWFP , Balochistan... Tit for tat.. Why are you angry with this?
Balochistan and NWFP is internal struggle for independence just as in people of Afghanistan are fighting against "foreign occupation".
What can Pakistan do about India? We are killing Pakistanis are will. Pakistan has no defence against India-supported killings. RAW officials deserve a raise. Hats off guys!

What ISI can do RAW can do better.

Pakistan has even lost out to us in terms of diplomacy. West and US dont believe a word you say and they blame you for everything that is wrong in this world. India is doing a heck of a job!

Riaz Haq said...

Here's an Indian newspaper report about Indian war prep against China and Pakistan:

Indian Army chief General Deepak Kapoor emphasizes that India is ready for a “the successful firming-up of the cold start strategy (to be able to go to war promptly) in the multiple fronts against multiple different militias at the same time.”

The plan is a full thrust assault into multiple anomies at the same time with massive Air Force superiority. If attacked by Pakistan and china at the same time, India will launch self-contained and highly-mobile `battle groups'', with Russian-origin T-90S tanks and upgraded T-72 M1 tanks at their core, adequately backed by far superior air cover and artillery fire assaults, for rapid thrusts into enemy territory within 96 hours.

India plans to end the war decisively within the first 96 hours forcing the other sides into a fast submission of ceasefire.

People’s Liberation Army is aware of the capacities of Indian Army and Air Force. It will be exactly opposite of 1962 war. That is why they are busy building massive infrastructure in the Indian border areas especially in Aksai Chin and Tibet.

The real war in that scenario will be between India and China while Pakistan will be used by China to create adequate disturbance for Indian Military.

That is the reason why Lt-General A S Lamba of Indian Army is so keen a massive thrust into Rawalpindi to quiet Pakistanis within 48 hours of the start of assault.

India’s biggest advantage is the its software capabilities in integrating signal intelligence with ground intelligence. India will use algorithmic seek and scan technology to counter the Chinese threats in the North and possible Pakistani nuclear threat in the West.

India is focused on integrating its Navy, Army and Air Force into an integrated command and Control system completely controlled and dominated by the superior software algorithms that can prove deadly in the war front.

Riaz Haq said...

India is buying 250-300 advanced Russian stealth fighter jets worth $30 billion, according to the BBC:

India will buy 250 to 300 advanced fifth-generation stealth fighter jets from Russia over the next 10 years, Defence Minister AK Antony has said.

Fifth-generation aircraft are invisible to radar, have advanced flight and weapons control systems and can cruise at supersonic speeds, officials say.

Mr Antony told a news conference in the Indian capital, Delhi, that Russia would also supply 45 transport planes.

India is a top buyer of Russian weapons and the two countries have strong ties.

"We have a 10-year programme and it is quite challenging (but) we have very good experience in military co-operation," news agency AFP quoted Russian Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov as saying at the conference.

The deal, which could be worth up to $30bn, is believed to be the richest in India's military history.

The agreement is expected to be signed when Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visits India in December, officials say.

This is potentially a huge deal, which could dramatically increase India's military capabilities, the BBC's defence and security correspondent Nick Childs says.

The two sides have been in talks for some time.

The fifth-generation stealth fighter is currently being developed in Russia and the prototype flew for the first time earlier this year.

At the moment the United States is the only country that has a fifth-generation stealth fighter actually in service.

Riaz Haq said...

Here are a few excerpts from a report of Indian Army Chief Gen V.K. Singh's interview published by Chandigarh Tribune:

What I look at it is that we have an unstable neighbour on our West (Pakistan). Unstable because of internal problems, unabated terrorism out there and unstable because it decided that it will aid some terrorists groups and support some terrorist groups for strategic aims because of political drift and the fissures that are coming up because of all these factors. And we also know that whenever situation become critical with this particular neighbour of ours it tends to direct attention of its people towards India. There is instability; there is a terrorist infrastructure which is in place. Till that time the threat to our country will remain because it looks at dismembering the country as a nation. We also have the so-called border problem because of what happened after 1948.


We have been looking on this (nuclear) threat for quite sometime. It is not that suddenly it has come, we knew at the capabilities of our neighbourhood and what was happening over there and we have been talking about it, we have been training for it and we have been looking at our own concepts and doctrine etc so far as this particular issue is concerned. As an Army, we are prepared to fight dirty which means not dirty in the sense of street fighting, dirty in the sense of fighting through our area which has been contaminated by a nuclear strike. We are confident that we will get through in such contaminated areas and this is part of our training methodology, doctrine and our concept.

It is not that somebody is going to say I will drop a bomb and therefore you stop on your track. Sorry, it does not happen that way, it is not going to happen. We will take the war to its logical conclusion whether it is a nuclear strike or no nuclear strike. I am quite confident of our nuclear capability. We are clear that as a nation we will be able to withstand whatever comes our way and retaliate in adequate measure.

We are ready to face the challenges that may come up. There are certain focus areas that we have kept for ourselves. Like we are looking at the type of surveillance equipment that can come, we look at our capability to do 24x7 operations where night is not a problem. We are looking at improving our networks centricity. We are looking at high technology items in terms of computer controlled and command controlled systems which provide synergy to the entire process. Some of these are on way and some are these are being given a push. The other area that we are looking is our capability for bringing in precision targeting.

We have embarked on a transformation process for our Army. Transformation is in terms of making the Army more agile, the Army more capable of transmitting its lethality and the Army in which there are no people who will be, in Army terms, left out of battle. Apart from that it is having a more responsive logistic system and ensuring that our Army headquarters are suitably structured so that they can contribute towards faster decision-making. This is what I think we should be able to achieve along with ensuring that whatever modernisation plans that we have they fructify to a large extent. I look at what we can do to increase our joint-manship network centricity so that we can operate in an environment where it should be possible for us to make use of all the acumen and skills that all the services we have.

Riaz Haq said...

In a recent interview, Indian Army chief Gen Singh talks about "fighting through our area which has been contaminated by a nuclear strike. We are confident that we will get through in such contaminated areas and this is part of our training methodology, doctrine and our concept".

It begs the questions: Is Mr Singh breeding super jawans immune to radiation?

I think Gen VK Singh's thinking is naive and dangerously out of date, it's as old as the 1950s when the Americans were building shelters in their basements to survive nuclear attack by the Soviet Union. I hope someone puts some sense into Singh's empty little hand about the reality of modern nuclear warfare.

Riaz Haq said...

India tops arms imports in the world, according to Bloomberg News:

India replaced China as the world’s top weapons importer, according to a study by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, as it aims to modernize its armed forces and project power through the region.

India received 9 percent of the volume of international arms transfers from 2006 to 2010, with 82 percent of that coming from Russia, Sipri said in a report released today. That topped China, South Korea and Pakistan, it said.

“The increases are substantial, and if you look at the Indian plans for the near future, they are massive,” Siemon Wezeman, a Sipri researcher who helped write the report, said in a telephone interview. “It’s worrying from the fact you are bringing a lot of weapons into an area that isn’t particularly stable, where you’ve got countries that have been at each other’s throats.”

India’s internal security threats and rivalries with Pakistan and China, the nuclear-armed neighbors with which it has border disputes, have driven the increase in expenditures, Wezeman said. The country’s plans to boost defense spending in the next decade to modernize the military have attracted U.S. and European firms banned from selling weapons to China.

The average volume of worldwide arms transfers in 2006-2010 was 24 percent higher than in 2001-2005, the report said. The Asia-Pacific region led the world, accounting for 43 percent of arms imports. It was followed by Europe at 21 percent, the Middle East at 17 percent and the Americas at 12 percent.
Economic Growth

India’s $1.3 trillion economy may expand by as much as 9.25 percent in the next financial year, the fastest pace since 2008, according to a Finance Ministry survey released last month. The World Bank estimates that more than three-quarters of India’s 1.2 billion people live on less than $2 a day.

Purchases by India of submarines, aircraft carriers and transport airplanes “can only be seen in the framework of regional ambitions,” Wezeman said.

India is seeking to buy 126 warplanes in the world’s biggest fighter-jet purchase in 15 years, according to the Indian Defense Ministry. Paris-based Dassault Aviation SA (AM), Chicago-based Boeing Co. (BA), Bethesda, Maryland-based Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT), Sweden’s Saab AB (SAABB), Russia’s United Aircraft Corp. and European Aeronautic, Defense & Space Co., based in Paris and Munich, are competing for the contract.

The outlays on weapons have allowed India to demand technology transfers as part of purchases, Sipri said. The U.S. and Europe have banned weapons sales to China since the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. U.S. military officials have questioned China’s motives in developing ballistic anti-ship missiles and radar-evading fighter jets.
‘Huge Market’

India is “in a position where they have this huge market at a time when exporters are in desperate need to find export markets,” Wezeman said.

The U.S. remains the world’s largest exporter of military equipment, accounting for 30 percent of arms deliveries between 2006 and 2010, the report said. The Defense Department is requesting $671 billion for the 2012 fiscal year starting Oct. 1, $37 billion less than this year’s request.

Stockholm-based Sipri, founded in 1966, conducts research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament, according to its website. A substantial part of its funding comes from the Swedish government, it said.

Riaz Haq said...

Here's how India and Pakistan stack up as arms importers, as reported by SIPRI:

"India is the world's largest arms importer," the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said as it released its latest report on trends in the international arms trade.

"India received nine percent of the volume of international arms transfers during 2006-10, with Russian deliveries accounting for 82 percent of Indian arms imports," it said.

Its arms imports jumped 21 percent from the previous five-year-period with 71 percent of its orders being for aircraft.

India's arms purchases were driven by several factors, said Siemon Wezeman of SIPRI'S Arms Transfers Programme.

"The most often cited relate to rivalries with Pakistan and China as well as internal security challenges," he wrote.

China and South Korea held joint second place on the list of global arms imports, each with six percent, followed by Pakistan, on five percent.

Aircraft accounted for 45 percent of Pakistan's arms imports, which had bought warplanes from both China and the United States. Pakistan's arms imports were up 128 percent on the previous five-year period, SIPRI noted.

Greece rounded off the top-five list arms importers, with four percent of global imports.

Riaz Haq said...

If the past is any guide, it's quite safe to assume that Pakistan will continue to effectively respond to all military threats to its security and assert its power ...be it nukes, missiles, satellites, fighter jets, drones, nuke subs, etc. Talking about India's nuke sub, it's just a matter of time before Pakistan launches its own nuclear subs to complete the nuclear triad. Let there be no doubt on this point.


When it comes to eating grass to build nukes, all of the available data from international sources shows that many Indians can't even find grass to eat, as hundreds of millions of Indians go to bed hungry every night.

Here's a quote from Times of India poking fun at the superpower claim:

With 21% of its population undernourished, nearly 44% of under-5 children underweight and 7% of them dying before they reach five years, India is firmly established among the world's most hunger-ridden countries. The situation is better than only Congo, Chad, Ethiopia or Burundi, but it is worse than Sudan, North Korea, Pakistan or Nepal.

Today India has 213 million hungry and malnourished people by GHI estimates although the UN agency Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) puts the figure at around 230 million. The difference is because FAO uses only the standard calorie intake formula for measuring sufficiency of food while the Hunger Index is based on broader criteria.


Riaz Haq said...

Pakistan is the third largest arms importer after India and South Korea, according to SIPRI:

Asia and Oceania accounted for 44 per cent of global arms imports, followed by Europe (19 per cent), the Middle East (17 per cent), the Americas (11 per cent) and Africa (9 per cent).

India was the world’s largest recipient of arms, accounting for 10 per cent of global arms imports. The four next largest recipients of arms in 2007–2011 were South Korea (6 per cent of arms transfers), Pakistan (5 per cent), China (5 per cent) and Singapore (4 per cent).

‘Major Asian importing states are seeking to develop their own arms industries and decrease their reliance on external sources of supply,’ said Pieter Wezeman, senior researcher with the SIPRI Arms Transfers Programme. ‘A large share of arms deliveries is due to licensed production.’

China shifts from imports to exports

China, which was the largest recipient of arms exports in 2002–2006, fell to fourth place in 2007–11. The decline in the volume of Chinese imports coincides with the improvements in China’s arms industry and rising arms exports.

Between 2002–2006 and 2007–11, the volume of Chinese arms exports increased by 95 per cent. China now ranks as the sixth largest supplier of arms in the world, narrowly trailing the United Kingdom.

‘While the volume of China’s arms exports is increasing, this is largely a result of Pakistan importing more arms from China’, said Paul Holtom, director of the SIPRI Arms Transfers Programme. ‘China has not yet achieved a major breakthrough in any other significant market.’
Other notable developments

In 2011 Saudi Arabia placed an order with the USA for 154 F-15SA combat aircraft, which was not only the most significant order placed by any state in 2011 but also the largest arms deal for at least 2 decades.

Greece’s arms imports decreased by 18 per cent between 2002–2006 and 2007–11. In 2007–11 it was the 10th largest arms importer, down from being the 4th largest in 2002–2006. Greece placed no new order for major conventional weapons in 2011.

Venezuela’s arms imports increased by 555 per cent between 2002–2006 and 2007–11 and it rose from being the 46th largest importer to the 15th largest.

The volume of deliveries of major conventional weapons to states in North Africa increased by 273 per cent between 2002–2006 and 2007–11. Morocco’s imports of major weapons increased by 443 per cent between 2002–2006 and 2007–11.

The comprehensive annual update of the SIPRI Arms Transfers Database is accessible from today at www.sipri.org.


Riaz Haq said...

Here's a report on world's largest exporters and importers of arms:

A new report says China has passed Britain to become the world’s fifth-largest arms exporter.

The report from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute says Pakistan is the biggest buyer of Chinese arms, accounting for 55 percent of China’s exports.

The report says Chinese weapon exports between 2008 and 2012 rose 162 percent over the previous five-year period.

It said the United States remains the world's top arms exporter, accounting for 30 percent of the market, followed by Russia at 26 percent, Germany at seven percent, France at six percent, and China at five percent.

The world’s top five arms importers were all in Asia. The report said India was the biggest buyer, followed by China, Pakistan, South Korea and Singapore.


Riaz Haq said...

Earlier this month, the United States approved a $952 million sale of helicopters, missiles, engines, targeting and positioning systems, and other equipment in response to a request made by Pakistan last year to help its efforts to counter domestic insurgents.\

“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a country vital to U.S. foreign policy and national security goals in South Asia,” reads the certification by the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notifying Congress of the possible sale on April 6.

Yet national security may just be a pretext used for the swift clearance of this deal.

According to Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, selling arms may once have been “a major foreign policy and security tool” for the U.S., but this practice has been replaced by the need to prop up the U.S. arms industry at a time when the country’s own military expenditures have dropped.

“To sell or not sell weapons depends only upon political and strategic imperatives,” said Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy, a professor of physics at the Forman Christian College University in Lahore, who is also a national security analyst.

Speaking to MintPress News, he added that that all arms suppliers, including the U.S., use human rights as a “fig leaf.” As an example of this, he pointed to the United States’ massive arms sales to Saudi Arabia, “which supports extremist groups across the world and mistreats minorities badly.”

“Today, given that Pakistan is fighting some Taliban groups instead of supporting them as earlier, it has become politically expedient and financially profitable for the U.S. to sell to Pakistan as well,” Hoodbhoy concluded.

Likewise, Commodore Uday Bhaskar, the director of the independent Society for Policy Studies in New Delhi and former head of the government-funded Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) and the National Maritime Foundation, a non-governmental think tank, noted the sale should be tied to “stringent conditions” on Pakistan’s army’s compliance with terrorism and human rights frameworks.

In 2014, global defense trade increased for the sixth straight year to $64.4 billion, up from $56.8 billion, with the U.S. and Russia topping the list of arms exporters. Soon after the approval of its sale to Pakistan, the U.S also approved a potential $57 million sale of air-to-surface missiles to Egypt.

According to IHS, a global information company, there has been “unparalleled demand from the emerging economies for military aircraft” since the escalation of “regional tensions” in the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

IHS’s Global Defense Trade Report, released in March, lists the top defense exporters and importers in 2013 and 2014 and shows how these rankings have changed year-on-year:

Top Defence Exporters Top Defence Exporters
2013 2014
1. United States 1.United States
2. Russian Federation 2. Russian Federation
3. France 3. France
4. UK 4. UK
5. Germany 5. Germany
6. Israel 6. Italy
7. China 7. Israel
8. Italy 8. China
9. Sweden 9. Spain
10. Canada 10. Canada

Top Defence Importers Top Defence Importers
2013 2014
1. India 1. Saudi Arabia
2. Saudi Arabia 2. India
3. UAE 3. China
4. Taiwan 4. UAE
5. China 5. Taiwan
6. Indonesia 6. Australia
7. South Korea 7. South Korea
8. Egypt 8. Indonesia
9. Australia 9. Turkey
10. Singapore 10. Pakistan

India’s race for arms
The Indian defense budget has increased to $40 billion, compared to a mere $7 billion for the neighboring Pakistani military. “India is claiming to be worried but its weapons purchases far exceed Pakistan’s,” Hoodbhoy asserted.

Meanwhile, the Chinese defense budget stands at roughly $145 billion, nearly four times that of India. In fact, China is second only to the U.S. in triple-digit military spending.


Riaz Haq said...

#SIPRI: #India world's top arms importer #China 2nd #Australia 3rd #Pakistan 4th. Top exporters: #US, #Russia, China http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/india-retains-worlds-largest-weapons-importer-tag/article8271899.ece …

China, the third largest arms exporter and importer, sold most of its weapons to Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar, says according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute report on global arms purchases.

India remains the world’s largest weapons importer over a five-year period according to latest report of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) on global arms purchases released on Monday. The report also says that China sold most of its weapons to India’s neighbours.

India accounted for 14 per cent of total imports between 2011 and 2015. China ranks second with 4.7 per cent, Australia (3.6 per cent), Pakistan (3.3 per cent), Vietnam (2.9 per cent) and South Korea (2.6 per cent) the report titled “Trends in international arms transfers-2015” said.

However on an annual basis India ceded its top spot to Saudi Arabia in 2015 which is reflective of the turmoil in the West Asia.

While Pakistan remains the main recipient of Chinese weapons accounting for 35 per cent, a growing trend for India to watch out for is that Pakistan is followed by Bangladesh and Myanmar, accounting for 20 and 16 per cent respectively, all three being neighbours of India.

India merely extended its top run from 2006-2010 period. The top five exporters in the period were U.S., Russia, China, France and Germany.

The report noted that a major reason for the high level of Indian imports is because India’s arms industry has so far largely failed to produce competitive indigenously designed weapons.

While Russia maintains a strong lead as the top supplier, purchases from U.S. are sharply increasing.

While the government has embarked on an ambitious Make in India drive to increase domestic manufacturing it is yet to bring in any meaningful technology build up in the country.

Chinese exports on the rise

Interestingly, China figures at third place as an exporter and importer.

China which has emerged as the world’s third largest arms exporter after U.S. and Russia has increased its exports of major arms by 88 per cent between 2006-2010 and 2011-2015 and concurrently China’s global share of arms exports rose from 3.6 to 5.9 per cent.

“China supplied major arms to 37 states in 2011-15, but the majority of these exports (75 per cent) were to states in Asia and Oceania,” the report said. Major arms include big platforms like aircraft, tanks and so on.

Chinese exports of major arms to states in Asia and Oceania in 2011-15 were 139 per cent higher than in 2006-10, the report added. This is likely to cross path with India’s own increased forays in the Indian Ocean region with emphasis on military diplomacy and capacity building.