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This book establishes the relevance of war as an instrument of state policy, and the necessity of armed forces to protect and promote national interests. It then traces India's warring traditions and the enviable professionalism of the Indian armed forces. Reflecting on their post-independence military ventures it analyses why, despite five wars, India's vexed territorial and border disputes have remained unresolved.

Later chapters critically dilate on a range of weighty issues related to the armed forces such as their apolitical nature, India's strategic culture, state of the civil-military relations, absence of a defence policy, ad hoc defence planning et al, and how these have acted as set back forces for the Services. One of the chapters debates the pros and cons of a coup in India and yet another one exhorts the armed forces to introspect. The book closes with a set of assertions that would keep the armed forces ready and relevant to match the national aspirations of rising India.

Manthan : Multifaceted Reflections on the Indian Armed Forces

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  • Maj Gen V K Shrivastava, VSM (Retd), retired from the Indian army after serving for almost 36 years. He was awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal (VSM) while combating insurgency. 

    A graduate from the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, he was also selected for the prestigious National Defence College, New Delhi. 
    Post-retirement, he was a Senior Fellow with the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi and led many delegations for interactions with think tanks abroad. He was also a member of the Indian team invited by the high profile National Defence University, USA. He has written text for four coffee table books, has a published monograph on China, a prize-winning essay and a number of articles on matters military to his credit.