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Rajnath’s message to Army Commanders — be prepared for any contingencies along China border

A file photo of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh at an exhibition organised on the sidelines of Army Commanders' Conference (Image courtesy: Ministry of Defence)

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday expressed full confidence in the Army for any contingency along the Northern borders emphasising that, since war preparedness is a continuous phenomena, India should always be ready for unpredictable and uncertain events that may crop up any time.

“We should always be honing up our fighting skills and weapons technologies so as to act effectively whenever required for. The nation is proud of its Army and the government is committed to facilitate the Army in their forward movement, on the road to reforms and capability modernisation,” said Singh while addressing the senior leadership of the Indian Army on third day of the first Army Commanders’ Conference (ACC) of 2023 on Wednesday.

Right since the Galwan Valley incident along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh in 2020, India has made it clear to China that disengagement in the border areas is essential for the restoration of peace and tranquillity, which is the basis for the development of bilateral ties.

At the same time, the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also made it known to Beijing that any attempts to transgress the LAC would be responded to firmly.

“It is our ‘whole of government’ approach to ensure availability of best weapons, equipment and clothing to our troops braving extreme weather and hostile forces to defend our territorial integrity,” Singh told the army top brass while also pointing that the ongoing talks for peaceful resolution will continue and disengagement and de-escalation remains the best way forward.

army commanders conference india

The apex-level biannual event, which began on Monday and will continue till April 21, is also discussing the future contours of India-China relations, along with brainstorming sessions on current and emerging security scenarios and operational preparedness review.

The ACC is an institutional platform for conceptual-level deliberations, culminating in making important policy decisions for the Indian Army.

Singh, in his address, stressed the present complex world situation which affects everyone globally. He mentioned that “unconventional and asymmetric warfare, including hybrid war” will be part of the future conventional wars which necessitates that the Armed Forces keep all these facets in consideration while planning and formulating strategies.

Without naming Pakistan, the Defence Minister also spoke on the situation along the Western borders, complementing the Army’s response to cross-border terrorism, however, the proxy war by the adversary continues.

“I compliment the excellent synergy between the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF), police forces and the Army in tackling the menace of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. The synergised operations in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir are contributing to increased stability and peace in the region and the same should continue, and for this I again compliment the Indian Army,” he said.

He also complimented the efforts of the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), which he said has led to the incomparable improvement of road communication in the borders both Western and Northern, while working under difficult conditions.

Singh complimented the significant contributions made by the Army in military diplomacy to further national security interests by creating sustainable cooperative relationships with foreign armies. He also spotlighted its high standard of operational preparedness and capabilities which the minister has “always been experiencing first-hand” during his visits to forward areas.

Also Read: China on radar, top Indian Army commanders discuss current and emerging threats