In a promising move, the Indian Navy has evolved a new naval doctrine that envisages projection of power beyond the shores.
Significantly, the 148-page report, which comes weeks after the Indian Army released its new doctrine, moves away from earlier concepts of coastal protection and instead adopts new concepts of power-projection and littoral warfare to support land forces in operating in enemy territory. While several maritime strategies have been published by Naval headquarters earlier, this is the first time that an Indian Maritime Doctrine has been published and clearly spells out the need for a navy that is capable of conducting operations far from its shores.[Indian Express]
Almost every major economic power has had a strong navy that not only secures trade routes and offshore markets, but also projects military power.
There is however a considerable gap between the vision of the doctrine and its assets on the ground. With only one new aircraft carrier on the horizon and a shortfall of new ships due to production delays, India’s defence planners must consider nurturing an indigenous private defence production industry in general and naval shipyards in particular.