Millennium Post

‘Pak waging proxy war’

Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag on Tuesday accused Pakistan of supporting a proxy war in Jammu and Kashmir despite suffering casualties within their country. Addressing the annual press conference, General Singh said, “Recent terror attacks reflect Pakistan’s desperation. Pakistan is doing this despite suffering from terrorism itself. Terrorists are finding it difficult to infiltrate from Line of Control and therefore their focus has shifted to international border.”

The Army Chief said one will have to “wait and watch” if Pakistan Army has had a change of heart since the gruesome attack on an Army school in Peshawar last month that drew condemnation in India. He also said that Indian security forces are carefully watching the situation in Afghanistan and its possible spill over into India. “Threats and challenges have been growing, both in intensity as well as commitment, because of active borders that we have,” he said.

Lauding the Army and other security forces for ensuring a safe environment to voters in Jammu and Kashmir which saw a high turnout in the recent Assembly election, Singh said, “People were confident of coming out to vote. Army and other security forces worked tirelessly not for weeks but months.”

The Army chief pointed out that 2014 saw the highest number of terrorists being neutralised in the state in recent years and put the figure at 110, out of which 104 were killed by the force. Last year, 65 terrorists were killed. Singh said the high figure showed the effectiveness of the counter insurgency grid that the Army has set up in the state. Singh said the force needs to modernise and enhance its operational effectiveness in the face of “numerous challenges.”

He said on taking over as the Chief of the Army Staff about six months back, he had laid down his vision and identified thrust areas for the Army. “These provide the guiding framework and reflect our aspirations to become a modern combat force capable of meeting our mandated role and responsibility,” he added.

Singh said the first thrust was on infrastructure development especially along our Northern and North Eastern borders. This “remains a priority to meet the large capability gap,” he said, adding that the second was “capability enhancement.” He added, “The raising of the Mountain Strike Corps is progressing as per laid down timelines. These efforts will significantly raise our capabilities on the Northern Front.”
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