Press Trust of india

Army’s operational readiness should always be at peak level: Rajnath to force commanders

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New Delhi: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh called on the top Army commanders on Wednesday to always maintain the force’s operational readiness at its peak level amid a lingering border row with China in eastern Ladakh.

In an interaction with the commanders at their ongoing biannual conference, Singh reasserted the faith of the billion-plus citizens in the Indian Army as one of the “most trusted and inspiring organisations” in the country.

At the five-day conference that started on Monday, the commanders are carrying out a comprehensive review of India’s national security challenges along the borders with China and Pakistan, besides delving on ways to bolster the 1.3 million-strong force’s military prowess.

The main highlight of the third day’s proceedings was Singh’s interaction with the senior leadership of the Army, which was preceded by a briefing on “Transformational imperatives for a future-ready force”.

The Army said the defence minister commended the force for maintaining a high operational readiness towards ensuring security and national sovereignty.

“I have full faith and confidence in the Indian Army and its leadership,” he said.

The defence minister also noted that the Army ought to be prepared for any operational contingencies and hence, the operational readiness should always be at its peak level.

Singh also referred to the stellar role played by the Army in guarding the country’s borders and fighting terrorism, apart from providing assistance to the civil administration whenever called for.

The defence minister complimented the forces for the high standard of operational preparedness and capabilities, which he has been experiencing first hand during his visits to forward areas, according to the Army.

“He commended the Army’s efforts to develop niche technologies in collaboration with civil industries, including premier educational institutions, and thereby progressing towards the aim of ‘modernisation through indigenisation’ or ‘Aatmanirbharta’ (self-reliance),” it said in a statement.

The Army Commanders’ Conference is an apex-level biannual event that is held in April and October or November every year.

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

The commanders are also undertaking a review of India’s military preparedness along the 3,400-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) in view of the military standoff with China in certain friction points in eastern Ladakh, officials said.

The anti-terror operation in Jammu and Kashmir as well as the overall situation in the Union Territory are also being deliberated upon extensively at the conference, they said.

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