A panel discussion on “Military Leadership for the Present Day” was held on Sunday, the last day of the 4th Military Literature Festival (MLF-2020) organised virtually in wake of COVID-19.The panel discussion was moderated by Senior Adviser to Chief Minister Punjab Lieutenant General TS Shergill while Lieutenant General Balraj Singh Nagal, Lieutenant General DDS Sandhu and ACM NAK Browne/AM KK Nohwar also participated and shared their views.Lieutenant General TS Shergill, who was moderating the penal discussion raised a question mark by citing the story of the Great Military Commander Alexander the Great, who displayed his personal bravery when troops afraid to climb the wall of the fort and even after he got injured raised his hands which was enough to tell his troops that that everything was fine and they are going forward.Lt Gen Shergill questioned that nowadays, when the battlefields are so diverse can an action like this really work, is this possible for a single commander for a huge force to display his personal magnetism, his personal bravery to his troops to create that surge within them to go forward.Lt Gen Balraj Singh Nagal, while taking the discussion forward said that Military leadership is all about men, their qualities, work, charisma and attributes. He said that professional knowledge, decision making, integrity, moral courage, physical courage, loyalty to country, organisation and yourself, Character, Vision, Judgement and Communication Skills are some of attributes which are essentials to be a good Military Leader.
Speaking on the occasion, Air Marshal Kishan Nohwar dwelled upon the qualities such as intelligence and personal charisma that ought to be in a military leader. He also made a mention of women military leaders of yore such as Jhansi Ki Rani and Joan of Arc who had the qualities of head and heart. Air Marshal Nohwar further elaborated that knowledge about your and especially your enemies' weapons systems assumes great significance for a military leader who must also have other attributes such as honesty, Integrity, Courage of Conviction, High emotional quotient, Out of the box thinking that out thinks the enemy besides having the presence of mind to deal with any type of situation.From the modern day point of view, Air Marshal Nohwar counted artificial intelligence as an important aspect apart from the drones which are more often in use now. Talking about the First Gulf war in 1990-91, he mentioned that the use of technology was evident in that conflict the Iraqi soldiers surrendered before a robot which was a first of it's kind incident. He also touched the topic of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among todays soldiers.Lt General DDS Sandhu in his views expressed concern over military leadership thinking about the past wars and not concentrating on the futuristic scenario. Making a mention of technological aspect, he said that technology is changing rapidly in modern day world both qualitatively and quantitatively which needs our focus all the more besides cyber space.Talking about the Indian soldiers, he further said that Indian soldiers are today more well educated and a different lot from what they were a decade ago. He also emphasized upon military leadership reaching out to the men to ensure that they develop confidence. Counting upon loyalty, moral courage, decisiveness of subordinates in their views apart from adaptability to the situation as the necessary attributes in today's soldiers , he said that these qualities only come with an effective military leadership at the helm.