About the author

Nitin A. Gokhale

Author, thought leader and one of South Asia's leading strategic analysts, Nitin A. Gokhale has forty years of rich and varied experience behind him as a conflict reporter, Editor, author and now a media entrepreneur who owns and curates two important digital platforms, BharatShakti.in and StratNewsGlobal.com focusing on national security, strategic affairs and foreign policy matters. At the beginning of his long and distinguished career, Gokhale has lived and reported from India’s North-east for 23 years, writing and analysing various insurgencies in the region, been on the ground at Kargil in the summer of 1999 during the India-Pakistan war, and also brought live reports from Sri Lanka’s Eelam War IV between 2006-2009.

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  1. Nitin Goyal

    This is first time a defence minister is talking about Indigenous procurement and we are seeing a long term strategy. He is very much clear that no product development can give a perfect product and he is creating a positive pressure on armed forces to involve in the product development.

    Just in a short period of 1 year, Govt had created an industry with a potential turnover of USD 60-70 billion in next 10 years.This potential doesn’t consider the export potential and how with that export we cement our strategic ties. For example, by exporting Brahmos missiles to Vietnam, we are creating a stumbling block to China. We shall also think about exporting the same to other East-Asian countries and especially Taiwan.

    We should understand that most of the technologies on the basis of which USA is an economic super-power is, were created for military and thereafter came to civilian use, be it internet, nano technology or drones.

  2. Lt Gen V M Patil (retired)

    Hi Nitin.
    Congratulations on starting – BharatShakti.in. The issues you have raised with Hon’ble RM are of priority concern. We are happy to note that he has addressed them with vision, clarity, time bound priority and achievable action plan. Now all the stake holders have to operate with transparency and accountability. We sincerely hope they do! RM certainly needs periodical feed back on performers and bottlenecks.
    May I suggest the following for consideration by your portal in your future interactions;
    1. Restructuring MoD with Serving Officers from three services integral for policy and decision making!
    2. Permanent inclusion of Security experts and NSA representatives in the Niti Ayog Planning cell.
    3. Revisit Arms & Ammo production policies to include – Exporting of combat and non combat equipment to other countries .
    Lt Gen V M Patil( Retired)

  3. chandra

    Thanks for a very detailed interview. Love the way the questions are structured and awestruck with Raksha Mantri’s understanding of issues…..

  4. Brig P C Ipe (Retd)

    Congratulations Nitin. Your interview with the RM has focused on all relevant issues and I am very impressed by his clarity and understanding of the complex acquisition process. Lets hope he is successful in streamlining the Defense acquisition procedure and manages to fill existing voids at the earliest. My best wishes to you and your team at BharatShakti.in.

  5. Uma Sudhindra

    Hearty congratulations Nitin and BharatShakti. Loved the structuring of the interview and the clarity with which the RM has addressed issues that haven’t been addressed for years. In the next part, could we also understand from him his views on cyber security, cyber intelligence in the Indian armed forces & strengthening our military diplomacy.

    All the best to Team BharatShakti.

  6. kunaal_g

    Firstly, congratulations to Mr. Gokhale on his exclusive interview with our Raksha Mantri, Mr. Parrikar. The interview indeed made for fascinating reading and it is heartening to note that we finally have a Defence Minister who has got his priorities right .

    As a concerned citizen, one was alarmed by the almost unending reports in the media on the gaping holes in India’s defence preparedness during the UPA government’s (and Mr. Antony’s!) infamous tenure.

    In contrast, Mr. Parrikar’s well-articulated plans to plug these gaps are very reassuring.

    Notwithstanding his plans for big ticket acquisitions like the Rafale, submarines etc. I’d be very interested to know why the Indian Army has cancelled trials for assault rifles and gone back to testing the DRDO’s Excalibur. According to the information available in the public domain, some of the biggest gun manufacturers like Beretta, SIG Sauer, Ceska were in the race. The DRDO hasn’t exactly covered itself with glory with the INSAS series. So, this cancellation appears to be a very retrograde step. The most affected will be the infantry soldier, who is the country’s first line of defence, and the most neglected. Planes and submarines come much later in the event of a conflict!

  7. Rishabh Pandey

    Dear Nitin,
    Congratulations on this fantastic endeavour.
    I have only recently started taking interest in matters related to defence and security and a site like this is a huge help to me and huge credit to you.
    May I make a suggestion:
    I know it would be very taxing initially, in terms of demands on your patience and time, but it would.increase effectiveness of the site many folds if there could be preface written for newbies like myself about the terms used, existing procedures and issues with them and the implications of new procedures.
    Understanding of defence matters and challenges is very limited in our mainstream discourse and i really think that if we make it more accessible, we would see a very vigorous and much needed participation from public at large.

  8. Aditya

    Greetings to Bharatshakti! Kudos for the RM interview.
    I have been reading for long that the acquisition process is too complex for layperson to understand etc.
    The RM instead has been able to set an outline of how the whole system operates within the MoD without resorting to cover of “secrecy” that was used earlier to serve petty interests. Thank you!


    Congrats Nitin for starting Bharat Shakti portal
    Your interview with RM has brought out the steps taken by the government. Suggestions given by Gen Patil are highly relevant and timely and should be taken up vigorously.

    Wishing u all the best

  10. Col BL Verma


  11. scs bangara

    I am not too sure whether an interview on burning issues alone would contribute to increasing the knowledge of informed readers. For instance, CDS has been under active consideration from the early stages of Parrikars tenure. Timelines have changed but not the content of his statement. What would be more pertinent is the trend on ongoing debates on the actual terms of reference of the role of CDS. By just adopting the solution given by the Naresh Chandra Committee we are unlikely to see any major improvements in structural solutions. Integrating MOD , changing the operational profile of the armed forces etc are burning issues. Going back to the Arun Singh committee report may yield better solutions.

  12. Brig. Vijay Natu

    A Very good beginning.This interview with the RM should be a periodic exercise, may be once a year so that we can learn what progress has been made on the issues taken up for implementation by the Defence Ministry. Well done Mr. Nitin Gokhale.

  13. Brig M R Pattar

    a very penetrating Q&A session which is informative and will address many apprehensions of all persons with an interest in matters militery

  14. A Jai Singh

    As it appears, the CDS will be just a little more than the present CISC. AS the Chairman of the COSC, he may wield some authority, but if he primus inter pares, that too will be marginal. Creating a CDS to just look at what the HQ IDS does presently, would devalue that designation – if the CDS is to be what he should be, he has to be the single-point operational authority which means that the Int and Ops functions of all there services should be placed under him. I don’t see any of the Chiefs allowing that to happen – one way of getting that done is through legislation but that in our case seems highly unlikely. It would also require a thorough re-structuring of th MoD which the bureaucrats wont let happen. Hence creating a CDS will yield little usefulness other than one more 4-star vacancy getting created. If he is designated the permanent Chairman COSC with no authority over operations or readiness or intelligence, how would that change the current structure in any way ?

  15. Pingback: Manohar Parrikar I was lucky to know – Nitin A. Gokhale

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