By Brig Amrit Kapur
31 Oct , 2016
The profession demands a younger profile, whereas due to the narrow pyramid of promotional avenues, the age profile in various command assignments continues to soar upwards, notwithstanding the Ajai Vikram Singh Committee report. There are now six to seven Lieutenant Colonels / Colonels in a major unit. If we continue in the same manner, we will end up very soon having units commanded by Brigadiers. Instead of addressing the core issues, we try to push the main problem under the carpet.
Instead of tackling the basic problem on a long-term basis, we end up carrying out up gradations giving temporary relief. This has resulted in an upside down pyramid, which means chaos and instability.
Quoting Central Police Organisations (CPOs), Central Para Military Forces (CPMF), State Police Force or State Armed Police, example of having a top-heavy rank structure is not going to solve the problem of an ageing profile of the Defence Forces in any way. The aim of this very exercise is not achieved, as there has been a marginal reduction in age profile in command assignments. Even the life expectancy in our country continues to soar upwards, further compounding and complicating the problem. The trend, therefore, is to keep increasing the average age up the ladder with a view to give employment till as late in life as is possible. On the face of it, it looks good but it militates against the needs of the job content.
This issue has been repeatedly raised in many a fora but to no avail. We don’t have the will and the desire to address contentious issues; we have the enemy within. We don’t have to wait for our adversaries to cut us to size by throwing up most experienced but older defence personnel.