2nd Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Indian Defence Policy
Themes, Structures and Doctrines

Edited By

Harsh V. Pant

ISBN 9780367370282
Published July 15, 2020 by Routledge India
406 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations

USD $260.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

The Routledge Handbook of Indian Defence Policy brings together the most eminent scholarship in South Asia on India’s defence policy and contemporary military history. It maps India’s political and military profile in South Asia and the Indian Ocean region, and analyses its emergence as a global player.

This edition of the handbook:

  • Canvasses over 60 years of Indian defence policy, its relation to India’s rising global economic profile, as well as foreign policy shifts;
  • Discusses several key debates that have shaped defence strategies through the years: military doctrine and policy, internal and external security challenges, terrorism and insurgencies;
  • Explores the origins of the modern armed forces in India; evolution of the army, navy and air forces; investments in professional military education, intelligence and net-centric warfare, reforms in paramilitary forces and the Indian police;
  • Comments on India’s contemporary strategic interests, focusing on the rise of China, nuclearisation of India and Pakistan’s security establishments, and developments in space security and missile defence. 

Taking stock of India’s defence planning architecture over the past decade, this accessibly written handbook will be an indispensable resource for scholars and researchers of security and defence studies, international relations and political science, as well as for government thinktanks and policymakers.

Table of Contents

  1.  Introduction
  2. Harsh V. Pant


    Section 1: Soldier, State and Society in India

  3. The Indian Army: 1700s-1947
  4. Daniel Marston

  5. Indian Civil-Military Relations: An Overview
  6. Ayesha Ray

  7. Indian Society and the Soldier: Will the Twain Ever Meet?
  8. Kaushik Roy


    Section 2: Military and Foreign Policy

  9. India and the Changing Nature of War: Gradual Incrementalism?
  10. Yogesh Joshi and Harsh V. Pant

  11. Military as an instrument of India’s foreign policy: An Expanding Footprint
  12. Sushant K. Singh

  13. India’s Erratic Defence Diplomacy: In Need of a Booster Dose
  14. Nitin A. Gokhale

  15. India’s Counter Terror Diplomacy: Strategy and Outcome
  16. Vinay Kaura


    Section 3: The Services

  17. The Indian Army: Evolution in the Age of Nuclear Weapons and Terrorism
  18. Sunil Dasgupta

  19. Evolution of the Indian Navy: Towards a ‘Maritime Awakening’?
  20. Arun Prakash

  21. Indian Air Force: Persuasive in Peace, Effective in War
  22. Vinod Patney

  23. Evolution of Jointness in Indian Defence Forces: Stuck Between the Services
  24. Vinod Anand


    Section 4: Doctrines

  25. Indian Army’s flagship doctrines: Need for Strategic Guidance
  26. Ali Ahmed

  27. The Indian Navy’s Doctrinal Evolution: Between Deterrence and Denial
  28. Manjeet S. Pardesi

  29. Doctrinal Evolution in the Indian Air Force: Towards a Strategic Future
  30. Arjun Subramaniam


    Section 5: Defence Versus Development

  31. Changing Contours of Indian Defence Expenditure: Past as Prologue?
  32. Laxman Kumar Behera

  33. Defence Procurement in India: Challenges Abound
  34. Amit Cowshish


    Section 6: Internal Security

  35. Islamist Terrorism in India: A Hybrid Threat
  36. Stephen Tankel

  37. Bullet Holes in Village Walls: India's Naxalite Challenge
  38. Ajai Sahni

  39. Insurgencies in India's Northeast: Rise, Fall and the Rise?
  40. Bibhu Prasad Routray


    Section 7: Institutional Infrastructure

  41. The Evolution in India’s National Security Apparatus: Persisting Structural Deficiencies
  42. Frank O’ Donnell and Harsh V. Pant

  43. The Indian Intelligence System: Meeting the Challenges of a New World
  44. Vikram Sood

  45. The Indian Police: Need for Reinvention
  46. R.N. Ravi

  47. Para Military Forces and Central Armed Police Forces of India: Punching Below Their Capabilities
  48. Narender Kumar

  49. Professional Military Education in India: Towards a New Architecture
  50. Kapil Patil


    Section 8: Nuclear Weapons and Space

  51. Nuclear Weapons in India’s Defence Policy: Achieving Conventional-Nuclear Synergy Verghese Koithara
  52. Space Security and Missile Defence: Towards Greater Pragmatism
  53. Rajeswari P. Rajagopalan

  54. India’s Cyber Defence Capabilities: Their Role in Net-Centric Warfare

Kartik Bommakanti



View More



Harsh V. Pant is Professor of International Relations in the Defence Studies Department and the India Institute at King’s College London, UK. He is Director of Research and Head of Strategic Studies Programme at Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi, India. He is also an adjunct fellow with the Wadhwani Chair in US–India Policy Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, DC. His current research is focused on Asian security issues. His most recent books include China Ascendant: Its Rise and Implications (2019), India’s Evolving National Security Agenda: Modi and Beyond (2019), Indian Foreign Policy: The Modi Era (2019), New Directions in India’s Foreign Policy: Theory and Praxis (2018) and India’s Nuclear Policy (2018). Pant writes regularly for various media outlets, including The Japan Times, The Wall Street Journal, The National (UAE) and The Telegraph.