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ADDRESS BY THE PRESIDENT OF INDIA, SHRI RAM NATH KOVIND ON THE OCCASION OF CALL ON BY THE FACULTY AND COURSE MEMBERS OF 57TH NDC COURSE

Rashtrapati Bhavan : 14.11.2017
ADDRESS BY THE PRESIDENT OF INDIA, SHRI RAM NATH KOVIND ON THE OCCASION OF CALL

1. I welcome all of you to Rashtrapati Bhavan, and particularly the 25 officers from 23 partner countries who are participating in the 57th course of the NDC. I hope your stay in India has been comfortable and your course has been intellectually enriching.

2. We live in a challenging and dynamic global environment. The very concept of security and defence is changing before our eyes. No longer is it limited to territorial integrity. Today, the idea of security incorporates economic and energy security, as well as concerns about food, health and the environment. The future of security is as much about preventing nuclear proliferation as about the integrity of the Internet and of data protection.

3. All of these have become components of what we call national power. Each of these areas requires specialisation and analysis. And yet, they are inter-linked. They demand an integrated approach from those responsible for our security – as well as a process of constant learning and knowledge updating.

4. Bringing different disciplines together to work in an integrated manner is a complex task. In a democratic system like India’s, this requires different agencies and departments of the state – or frankly even the private sector – to work in coordination. And to understand the strengths and limits of each other’s functioning.

5. This means that the political executive and officers of the civil services must be conversant with the capabilities and thinking of the defence forces. Similarly, military officers need to be sensitised to the constitutional and administrative framework within which the executive operates. All of these are elements in the creation of a national security approach.

6. And since no nation is an island, this understanding helps to devise policies and plans for regional and international security as well, with the cooperation of friendly countries.

7. It is in this context that the NDC course is so important. It helps us build capacities by using the best human resources and officers, both civil and military. We do this for not just individual country needs – but for an enlightened understanding of our shared security concerns.

8. I am told that six components or studiescomprise the curriculum of the NDC course. TheSocio-Political Study helps in comprehending the main features of Indian society and polity. TheEconomy Security Study introduces you to principles and practices that shape economic trends and their impact on comprehensive security.

The next three studies are on:

I.International Security Environment

II.Global Issues, including technology and the environment

III.India’s Strategic Neighbourhood

9. All of these focus on factors that shape the international security environment – and affect India’s foreign policy.

10. The final study is on Strategies and Structures for National Security. It is the synthesis of everything you have learnt and experienced during the year.

Ladies and Gentlemen

11. I am confident that this course and this exposure would have left you better informed and enhanced your abilities to contribute to your country’s security perspectives.

12. India and its neighbourhood – and the broader Asian continent – are the location of multiple security threats and risks that are of global significance. Terrorism and violent extremism are common challenges. These challenges are both state-based and asymmetrical. Also, with globalisation and the technology revolution, Asia has emerged as the centre of the 21st century economy. Securing this economic rise and checking attempts to destabilise it will be an important task in the years ahead. Threats will come in all domains – from the maritime space to cyberspace.

13. This makes it important to promote a "strategic culture” in India and indeed in all the countries represented here. As graduates and alumni of the NDC, you are now part of the same family. And along with the faculty members of the NDC, I am sure you will contribute to strengthening our understanding of the multi-dimensional approach to security in the years to come.

14. In conclusion, I wish the NDC and all the participants in this course the very best. To our international participants, I would say this is not a time for goodbyes but rather for new beginnings. Wherever you go, you will carry a bit of India with you!

Thank you

Jai Hind!

 

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