After taking voluntary retirement, Kanwal worked with several think tanks

Retired brigadier Gurmeet Kanwal, who was a noted strategic affairs analyst, died at the Indian Army's R&R Hospital in Delhi on Monday. Kanwal was an authoritative voice on strategic policy issues, in particular on issues concerning the armed forces.

According to his profile on the website of the Manohar Parrikar Institute of Defence Studies and Analyses, Kanwal had commanded an infantry brigade along the Line of Control during Operation Parakram (2001-2002) and an artillery regiment in counter-insurgency operations in Kashmir (1993-1994). Kanwal had graduated from the National Defence Academy in 1971.

He also served as deputy assistant chief of the Integrated Defence Staff.

After taking voluntary retirement in 2003, Kanwal joined the Observer Research Foundation and also served at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses and Centre for Air Power Studies. Kanwal was director of the Centre for Land Warfare Studies from 2008 to 2012. He also co-founded two think tanks: Forum for Strategic Initiatives (FSI) and the South Asian Institute for Strategic Affairs (SAISA).

Kanwal authored several books such as Nuclear Defence: Shaping the Arsenal, Indian Army: Vision 2020, Pakistan’s Proxy War, Heroes of Kargil and Kargil ’99: Blood, Guts and Firepower.

Kanwal has also regularly written for numerous publications, including THE WEEK.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who had previously served as defence minister, mourned the death of Kanwal. Sitharaman tweeted, "Saddened on hearing Brigadier @gurmeetkanwal is no more. A scholar of strategic affairs, once associated with the @IDSAIndia. A thorough gentleman, with many rich experiences..."

Retired Lt general Vinod Bhatia, who is also a strategic affairs commentator, tweeted Kanwal was a "soldier scholar, leader, colleague, friend and guide. His contributions to the army and nation are one too many. Clear and concise his ideas have contributed to shaping defence policies and strategy".

His son, Rahul Kanwal, is a noted journalist with India-Today.