Press Trust of india

Army commanders discuss Kashmir situation

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New Delhi: Senior Indian Army commanders today discussed the increase in ceasefire violations along the Line of Control, the volatile situation in Kashmir Valley, and the challenges faced by forces, particularly along the borders with China and Pakistan.

During the Army Commanders Conference, which began on Monday and will conclude tomorrow, they also discussed the “radicalisation of youth in the Valley”, a senior Army official said.

The official said “considerable” time was devoted to “repriortising” existing requirements to ensure that resources allocated for force modernisation and capacity building were optimally utilised within the budgetary allocation.

The Army commanders will tomorrow discuss matters related exclusively to military operations.

Last month, the Army told a parliamentary panel it was reeling under severe fund crunch and struggling to even make emergency procurement when there was a real possibility of a two-front war and both China as well as Pakistan were carrying out modernisation of their defence forces in “full swing”.

Discussions were also held on increasing the share of indigenisation in force modernisation.

“The deliberations appraised the current situation along the LoC, the increase in the CFVs (ceasefire violations) and the adequacy of the response mechanisms,” the Army official said.

The commanders discussed the situation in the Valley and also reviewed the developments affecting the modus operandi of the operations of the armed forces deployed in the region.

Security forces have faced stiff opposition from residents while carrying out operations in the Valley.

“It was also felt that priority must be accorded towards ushering peace, by conducting counter-militants operations that minimise collateral damage,” the official said.

“The radicalised youth must be brought into the mainstream by carrying out de-radicalisation and collective approach that focuses on convincing the youth to shun violence and gun culture,” he added.

The commanders also deliberated on the prevailing situation along the northern borders, capacity building steps, including infrastructure development.

A major focus of the conference was on bolstering the Army’s overall operational preparedness along the nearly 4,000-km-long border with China.

Indian and Chinese troops were locked in a 73-day standoff in Doklam in the Sikkim sector last year after the Indian side stopped the construction of a road in the disputed area by the Chinese Army. The faceoff ended on August 28.

The official said the Army commanders also deliberated upon cyber-security and security of military establishments.

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