In the first official statement in Parliament on the India-China military standoff in Ladakh, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday said, China is trying to unilaterally alter the status quo on the Line of Actual Control, while India wants to peacefully resolve the ongoing confrontation. Singh said, India is fully prepared to deal with any situation and the morale of Indian troops remains high despite several face-offs with the Chinese troops. “The Chinese actions reflect a disregard of our various bilateral agreements”, the Defence Minister said.
Singh said that the Indian armed forces have taken adequate counter-measures to match the Chinese military buildup across the LAC. He admitted that India “is facing a challenge in eastern Ladakh” this time, but did not elaborate saying he “would not go into sensitive operational issues”. The Defence Minister’s words in Parliament were carefully modulated and balanced, but it reveals how China is resorting to aggressive postures with massive military buildup and had been making frequent attempts at incursions.
India has tried its best to resolve the issue, both militarily and diplomatically. Both National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar spoke to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, and our Defence Minister spoke to his Chinese counterpart, but China is not yielding. It is unwilling to listen to reason. The statement made by our Defence Minister clearly indicates that a warlike situation on the LAC cannot be immediately ruled out. The possibilities remain because Chine is not yielding.
In our prime time show ‘Aaj Ki Baat’ on Tuesday night, we showed exclusive visuals, taken by our Defence Editor Manish Prasad and cameraperson Chandra Bhan, of how our army and air force are in a state of preparedness near the LAC in Ladakh. Looking at the visuals on the preparedness of our armed forces, we cannot but marvel at the extensive, scientific and minute planning made by our strategists. The Defence Ministry, on its part, has provided all facilities to our brave jawans, manning our posts at heights of more than 16,000 feet.
Looking at the morale of our officers and jawans, we can rest assured that our borders are safe and secure in capable hands. One should not forget that life at such altitudes is not easy. Winter is fast approaching, and our jawans will have to face biting cold weather, in which oxygen levels drop and it is even difficult to breathe normally. Our troops are ready with adequate food provisions, ammunition and weapons to take on the enemy.
We should indeed be proud of our officers and jawans when we watch the visuals of their state of preparedness. To all questions relating to ‘How’s the josh’, these brave officers and jawans always reply “High, sir”. Such is their tenacity and morale. All of us must salute them for their bravery so that they may know that the entire nation stands solidly behind them. Our government is confident and the ‘josh’ of our officers and jawans is high.
The visuals from a forward location shown on Tuesday night in ‘Aaj Ki Baat’ clearly show our troops have enough stocks of food, medicines, ammunitions, weapons and fuel. Our Globemaster transport aircraft and Chinook choppers are constantly supplying essentials to our troops deployed at the frontline. The planning is so meticulous that even if there is bad weather and the supply line is disrupted, our troops will be left with enough essentials to last the whole winter.
This is unprecedented in our army’s history. Tents have been erected for our officers and jawans at heights of 18-20,000 feet. These tents can withstand biting winter in temperature as low as minus 50 degrees Celsius. Three-layered suits, camouflage jackets, solar heaters and lights, avalanche kits along with medical supplies, top quality food provisions that can last for almost a year have been provided to our troops. Even if there is a limited war, our troops are fully equipped with arms, ammunition and provisions to last the entire duration of the conflict.
Let us hope that the Chinese military leaders realize the folly that they are going to commit. If they do not yield from their intransigent position, the only option left is a limited war. Our valiant armed forces are ready to give a crushing blow to the enemy.
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