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Pakistan Armed Forces secured 13th position on most powerful in the world on the Global Firepower Military Strength Index 2017.
According to data released by the Global Firepower (GF) on its website, ranking of a country relies on 50 factors to determine nation’s PowerIndex score. In its 2017 ranking, it (GF) included 133 countries in the GFP database.
The methodology or formula adopted on ranking allows the small but technologically advanced countries to compete with least technologically advanced, large countries. Some of the most important attributes included in the formula are geographical factors, logistical flexibility natural resources and local industry influence on the final ranking. Moreover, ranking doesn’t rely on the total number of weapons available to any single country rather it focuses on weapon diversity.
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The high population countries with high manpower achieve a higher ranking. Most significantly, the nuclear stockpiles are not taken into consideration but nations with recognized or suspected nuclear capability are awarded a bonus. The countries having no naval forces being a landlocked country are penalized for lack of diversity.
India’s military power relies on the economic supremacy
The data is useful in drawing a comparison between Indian and Pakistani military capabilities based on different factors. Only two other Muslim countries Turkey and Egypt are placed above Pakistan at 8th and 10th position respectively.
The military strength of nations doesn’t only rely on individual factors but collective factors are also taken into account which could assist in waging a prolonged war against other nations.
Pakistan’s archrival India is ranked 4th on the list, largely depending on its huge economic resources. All the Indian military capabilities are based on mammoth defense budget of $57 billion, while Pakistan currently spends only $7 billion on its defense. The difference in economic strength is the backbone of India’s ascendency as military might.
India has doubled the aircraft strength to 2,102 aircraft as compared to Pakistan’s 951 aircrafts. India has 676 fighter aircraft as compared to Pakistan’s 301.
The availability of huge manpower makes India achieve a higher ranking. India has a total of 489,600,600 individuals who are fit for service as compared to Pakistan’s 75,325,000. In addition, India has 4,207,250 total military personnel out of which active personnel are 1,362,500, and 2844750 are the reserve personnel. However, Pakistan has 919,000 total military personnel out of which active personnel is 637,000 and 252,000 are the reserve personnel.
Air power is an exceedingly important component of any modern military force. India has doubled the aircraft strength to 2,102 aircraft as compared to Pakistan’s 951 aircrafts. India has 676 fighter aircraft as compared to Pakistan’s 301.
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Moreover, Pakistan has 394 attack aircraft, and 316 helicopters, 52 of those are attack choppers. India leads Pakistan with 809 attack aircraft, and 666 helicopters, out of which only 16 are attack helicopters. Moreover, Pakistan has 190 trainer aircraft as compared to India’s 323.
Though Indian Air Force is the world’s fourth-largest having services of more than 2,000 aircraft according to report analyzed by the HIS Jane’s in 2014, only 60% of the aircraft were operational & fit to fly. For example, a report by the government agency said that only 16-38% of the 45 MiG 29K jets were in service.
In the evaluation of Army strength which is classified under land forces, GF reported that India has 4426 combat tanks, 6704 armored fighting tanks, 290 self-propelled artillery, and 7414 towed artillery. While Pakistan has 2924 combat tanks, 2828 armored fighting tanks, 465 self-propelled artillery, and 3278 towed artillery.
India enjoys considerable Navy strength with 3 aircraft carriers, 11 destroyers, and 23 corvettes while Pakistan has none of these. Pakistan has 197 total naval assets, 8 submarines and 17 patrol craft and India has 295 naval assets, 15 submarines, and 139 patrol craft.
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Effective logistics and maintenance support is as important as direct combat. India has better road and railway coverage than Pakistan. It has 7 major ports as compared to Pakistan which has only 2 terminals according to GF which give India huge edge over Pakistan.
As expected US tops the rankings followed by the Russia and China. American military spends whopping $600 billion annually which is 3.73 times the spending of China and astonishingly 13.34% of Russian spending on defense.
Warmongering attitude and ambitions to achieve powerful military status especially to undermine Pakistan tempt India to spend big on its defense.
The huge disparity in the defense spending at the top of the world global firepower ranking is largely dependent on the economic supremacy of global powers over one another.