- “Over the past decades, there has been a doctrinal shift in India’s defence policy from defensive deterrence to offensive deterrence.” Analyse. (150 words)
- Recently the 5G Spectrum auction ended. In this context, how can 5G technology potentially bring about a digital revolution in India? Identify the challenges in adoption of 5G technology in India. (250 words)
1. “Over the past decades, there has been a doctrinal shift in India’s defence policy from defensive deterrence to offensive deterrence.” Analyse. (150 words)
- Defensive deterrence is also known as deterrence by denial is the practice of discouraging or restraining a nation from taking unwanted actions, such as an armed attack. It involves an effort to stop or prevent an action.
- Offensive deterrence or deterrence by punishment on the other hand is to carry the fight to the enemy through means such as exploiting internal contradictions, international isolation, etc.
- Shift in India’s defence policy:
- India carried out surgical strikes in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir in the aftermath of Uri Attack.
- India responded to the February 14 Pulwama terror attack with an aerial surgical strike on targeting the training facility of the perpetrators within mainland Pakistan
- The raising of two new army divisions in 2009, Mountain Strike Corps since 2013 and the positioning of Sukhoi Su-30MKI squadrons in Northeast India are intended to provide a shift in military strategy from a defensive posture (deterrence by denial) towards deterrence by punishment vis-à-vis China.
- More recently, virtually all Indian Army and Air Force acquisitions have been aimed at reducing the Chinese operational advantage in Tibet, from the US-made Apache and Chinook helicopters and M777 artillery to the French Dassault Rafale fighter squadrons, armed with SCALP and Meteor missiles.
- In a contingency with China, the capacity to interdict Chinese operational and logistic infrastructure in Tibet is the key to India’s operational plans. This is the main rationale for stationing Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighters and BrahMos Block III missiles in Northeast India, providing the capability to strike targets deep inside Tibet.
- Development of India’s Integrated Missile Development Programme
- India’s Nuclear Weapons programme
- Reasons for the shift:
- Lack of positive results with India’s traditional and preferred defensive strategy
- The offence on the other hand was unmindful of the nuclear threshold. This left India with the strategic doctrinal choice of ‘defensive offence’.
- India’s hostile neighbourhood is also the reason for the change in this doctrine.
- Rising number of offensive actions by China and Pakistan on Indian borders
- The choice of security doctrine is a prerequisite for a government as it informs its actions in preserving, creating and securing the conditions of security for the state. With changing tactics and nature of warfare, India too must evolve its security doctrines.
2. Recently the 5G Spectrum auction ended. In this context, how can 5G technology potentially bring about a digital revolution in India? Identify the challenges in adoption of 5G technology in India. (250 words)
- 5G is the fifth generation wireless technology. It can provide higher speed, lower latency and greater capacity than predecessor networks.
- 5G- Digital Revolution
- Fast data would help speed up a range of applications such as enhanced consumer experience via high quality streaming, faster storage and access of cloud by businesses, better communication, etc
- Greater realism in Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Extended Reality with lighter devices and immersive content will revolutionise education techniques, gaming, entertainment industries etc.
- It will help in developing critical communications, such as drones would become a key tool to accelerate and support emergency situation response, connected sensors would be able to detect and warn about disasters quickly, road collisions would be prevented by use of connected vehicles sharing data.
- Internet of Things (IoT): 5G would seamlessly connect a massive number of embedded sensors in virtually everything through the ability to scale down in data rates, power, and mobility—providing extremely lean and low-cost connectivity solutions.
- It can be incorporated in areas like Smart City Infrastructure and Traffic Management, Industrial Automation, Wearables and Mobile devices, Precision agriculture etc.
- Challenges in adoption of 5G
- Technical Challenges:
- Availability of spectrum: conflict with ISRO for satellite services.
- Electronic Equipment Manufacturing: Complete 5G supply chain has high import dependency.
- Financial costs and high tax burden on telecom companies (which are already facing lot of troubles)
- Infrastructural challenges:
- Backhaul Infrastructure: India lacks a strong backhaul to transition to 5G
- Increasing role of memory and storage infrastructure: With 5G, the quantum of data generated from users’ devices multiplies, resulting in more data that has to be stored, moved, processed and secured. This brings a need for large-scale enhancement in memory and storage infrastructure.
- Lack of uniform policy framework: Delays due to complex procedures across states and non-uniformity of levies along with administrative approvals impact telecom service providers negatively.
- Digital divide: Since 5G is feasible in more populated areas, it may widen the digital divide in urban and rural areas.
- Cyber security and privacy concerns
- Technical Challenges:
- Though 5G technology has the potential for ushering a major socio-economic transformation in India, it poses several challenges as well.