The three armed forces face a shortage of over 9,096 officers, with the Army topping the list, the Lok Sabha was informed on Wednesday.
In a written response to a question in the Lower House of Parliament, Subhash Bhamre, Minister of State for Defence said as on January 1, 2018, the authorised strength of the Army was 49,933, but it has 42,635 officers, which is 7,298 short of the sanctioned strength.
The authorised strength for the Navy is 11,352 officers as against the existing number of 9,746 officers, which is 1,606 less than the sanctioned number.
The Air Force has a shortage of 192 officers, Bhamre said, adding that it has 12,392 officers as against the sanctioned strength of 12,584 officers.
In response to another question on whether the government has received any proposal from China for a border defence cooperation pact, the minister replied in negative.
He said an agreement on border defence cooperation between India and China was signed on October 23, 2013.
"No new proposal for a defence cooperation has been received from China," the MoS said.
He said the government has taken various steps to strengthen defence cooperation with China, including mechanisms to enhance military to military exchanges and ensure maintenance of peace, stability and tranquillity along the India-China border.
These measures include annual defence and security dialogue, exchanges at the level of border troops, border personnel meetings, meetings of the Working Mechanism for Consultation on India-China Border Affairs and agreements and protocols relating to confidence-building measures.
For in-depth, objective and more importantly balanced journalism, Click here to subscribe to Outlook Magazine