GS Paper I- History and Geography of the World and Society.

Kinzhal Missile: Russia Successfully Launches Hypersonic Missile.

Background

  • Russia has said it successfully launched a hypersonic missile described by Vladimir Putin as an ideal weapon when he unveiled new armaments earlier this month.
  • The Kinzhal missile was launched from a MiG-31 aircraft that took off from an airfield in south-western Russia, the defence ministry said.
  • The Kinzhal missile was one of the weapons the Russian president unveiled in his state of the nation address earlier this month (March 2018), ahead of a presidential election on 18 March, 2018.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • Putin said the tested hypersonic missile flies at 10 times the speed of the sound and can overcome air-defence systems.
  • The missile has been deployed in the southern military district since 1 December, 2017, he said.
  • Dmitry Rogozin, the deputy prime minister, said that work had been carried out to modernise the “unique” MiG-31 that will carry the missile.
  • Since the start of the year, more than 250 sorties have been carried out by the aircraft to perfect the missile system.
  • The missile system has no counterparts across globe owing to high flight performance characteristic of MiG-31 fighter jet and hypersonic missile with small radar signature and high manoeuvrability.

Sources- The Guardian.

GS Paper II- Governance.

Nearly A Decade After 26/11, India’s First Coastal Policing Academy Set Up In Gujarat.

Background

  • India’s stunning coastline is approximately 7,517 km long and touches several key states and Union Territories. It is a continuous task for the marine forces to be manning such a vast coastline, and despite the constant vigilance, untoward incidents do occur.
  • Almost a decade after the 26/11 terror attack triggered a radical overhaul of the Indian coastal defence apparatus, the Union home ministry has sanctioned the launch of the National Academy of Coastal Policing (NACP), India’s first institution to safeguard the nation’s shoreline.
  • The NACP is the first-of-its-kind institution, which has been created and will be managed by a multi-agency team of paramilitary and defence forces. It will train the marine forces of states, which have sea lines.

Highlights Of The Development-

  • An official order also mentions that the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD), which is the Union Home Ministry’s Policing Think Tank, will head the establishment, and run the academy. Various factions of the armed forces will be involved, each playing various roles.
  • The BSF, will form part of the core committee, and will also provide security to the Arabian Sea Cost campus, which is at a flying distance from the Pakistan Coast.
  • The Navy and The Coast Guard, will form the rest of the core committee, provide skilled trainers and manage access to jetties and boats, for the academy’s trainees.
  • This is a unique initiative, as currently, the nation has no organisation to train marine or coastal police forces in these subjects in a professional manner. Which is why, the academy will adopt the best practices of the Indian Navy, BSF and Coast Guard.
  • The venture was confirmed by the Union Home Ministry, from a campus of Gujarat’s Fisheries Research Centre located in coastal Okhla, in the recently-created Devbhoomi Dwarka district.
  • The ministry has also asked the Gujarat Government to provide two interceptor boats to the coastal police academy, for effective sea-patrolling by the marine unit of the state police.
  • This is India’s first initiative since 26/11 to upgrade coastal surveillance to prevent disasters. The coastal police academy, adopting the best practices of India’s existing defence bodies, will be a formidable addition to the forces protecting the nation.

Sources- The Better India.

GS Paper III- Security.

India, France Sign Strategic Pact On Use Of Each Other’s Military Bases.

Background

  • Reflecting a growing depth in defence ties, India and France on 10th March, 2018 inked a strategic pact providing for the use of each other’s military facilities including opening naval bases to warships, a pact that comes amid China’s growing military expansionism in the Indo-Pacific region.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron held wide-ranging deliberations during which they also decided to create an annual defence dialogue at the ministerial level to explore ways to further deepen defence and strategic ties.
  • There were indications that the French side pitched for procurement of another batch of 36 Rafale jets by India during the talks.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • The two countries also signed a pact on exchange and reciprocal protection of classified or protected information which came in the backdrop of the Indian government refusing to divulge details of the multi-billion dollar Indo-French Rafale fighter jet deal.
  • On ties in the maritime security sphere, the French President said both the countries will have “unprecedented” level of cooperation to ensure peace and stability in the Indian Ocean and Pacific regions.
  • He said space agencies of both countries will have joint monitoring mechanism for developments in the maritime sphere, while navies of the two nations will share intelligence and call their respective military bases for any requirement.
  • Detailed discussions on specific projects including on the Scorpene submarine programme for the Indian Navy was also discussed during the Sitharaman-Parly talks.
  • A joint statement issued after the talks said the pact on the protection of classified information reflected the high level of “strategic trust” between the two countries.
  • It said Modi and Macron noted with satisfaction the “on-schedule” progress in the implementation of acquisition related agreements, including the Rafale aircraft deal and the construction of six Scorpene submarines in India, in collaboration with French shipbuilder Naval Group.
  • The Indo-French agreement on reciprocal logistics support for armed forces came nearly two years after India signed a similar pact with the US on use of each other’s land, air and naval bases.
  • Officials said the agreement will facilitate the reciprocal provision of logistic support, supplies and services between the armed forces of the two countries during authorised port visits, joint exercises and joint training among others.

Sources- TOI.