eiterating that the India Army is capable of giving a befitting reply to any challenge that arises along the borders, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday said today the troops are protecting the northern borders of the country by being fierce like Shankar’s trident.
However, he said efforts should be made to find a solution through dialogue with the neighboring countries.
“Our Army has proved that it is capable of giving a befitting reply to any challenge that arises along the borders. They have courage and aggression, but at the same time patience… They know where to use aggression and where to use patience,” Mr Singh on Monday said after inaugurating 63 infrastructure projects constructed by Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in eight states from the Union Territory on the second day of his three-day visit to Ladakh.
“The last time I came here, our soldiers had fought with courage in Galwan valley. I bow to the memories of all those soldiers who sacrificed their lives for the country in Galwan Valley,” he said, adding that the people of this country will never forget their sacrifice.
Asserting that Indians believe in global peace, the Defence Minister said India has been giving the message of ‘Vasudev Kutumbakam’ (the world is one family). “We don’t want peace only in our national borders , but across the world. Even if we take up arms, we do it to restore peace. This is our tradition. We have never attacked any country because we do not believe in violence,” he said.
Mr Singh said at time there are differences with neighbours. “But, neighbours also have to think that we have been neighbours for decades and will remain neighbours for decades. Why can’t we come up with a permanent solution to our issues through dialogues? I’m talking about all our neighbuors,” he said.
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“Efforts should be made to find a solution through dialogue with the neighboring countries. The intention should be clear. We neither want to show aggression to anyone, now will we bow down to anyone’s aggression. Our Army has the capability to give a befitting reply to every challenge,” he said.
Lauding the Army, he said it is because of their heroic exploits that they have been adorned with the name of ‘Trishul’ division. “Today you are protecting the northern borders of the country by being fierce like Lord Shankar’s trident and I have full faith that you are capable of facing any situation arising on the border,” he said.
“I am told that the 3rd division of the 14th Corp was established in 1962 during the Indo-China war. Within a few years of its establishment, you played a decisive role in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. Your heroic stories raised the heads of countrymen in Kargil war too,” he added.
Mr Singh on Sunday arrived in Ladakh to review the overall security situation in the hinterland and along the borders in the Union Territory. The Defence Minister’s visit to Ladakh holds significance as it comes days after India and China held a fresh round of talks and agreed to resolve ‘remaining issues’ to end the prolonged military standoff that began in May last year along the LAC in eastern Ladakh.
On Sunday, the defence minister met elected representatives of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Councils (LAHDC), Kargil and Leh. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also interacted with 300 veterans at Leh and reiterated the Government’s commitment towards the welfare of the ex-servicemen. He was also briefed about the security situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China in Eastern Ladakh by the senior Army officials, including GOC Fire and Fury Corps.
At the 22nd meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC), held virtually, the two sides agreed to hold the next (12th) round of the Senior Commanders meeting at an early date to achieve the objective of complete disengagement from all the friction points along the LAC. “The two sides had a frank exchange of views on the situation along the LAC in the Western Sector of the India-China border areas,” a statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs said on Friday.
It said both sides agreed on the need to find an early resolution to the remaining issues along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh keeping in view the agreement reached between the two Foreign Ministers in September 2020.
“In this regard, the two sides agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through the diplomatic and military mechanisms to reach a mutually acceptable solution for complete disengagement from all friction points so as to ensure full restoration of peace and tranquility to enable progress in the bilateral relations. They also agreed that in the interim, the two sides will continue to ensure stability on the ground and prevent any untoward incident,” the statement added.