Defence Minister: PoK decision ought to have been made during the 1971 conflict

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Rajnath Singh, the defense minister, stated Monday that the decision on Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) should have been made in 1971.
The Defence Minister made this statement during a ceremony honoring the families of martyrs in Badoli, Himachal Pradesh’s Kangra district.

“The Golden Jubilee of the war’s victory in 1971 has just passed. The 1971 war will be recognized in history as a conflict waged for humanity rather than for power, wealth, or possessions, “declared Mr. Singh.

“One single regret exists. The choice about PoK ought to have been made then, “he added.

Mr. Singh also attended a similar event at the Hamirpur district’s Nadaun.

In Kangra, Mr. Singh also discussed the Centre’s steadfast commitment to turning the nation into an “Aatmanirbhar” and the advancements made possible by the steps taken to carry out Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision.

“India used to be recognized as a defense importer. It is currently one of the top 25 exporters of defense goods worldwide. Defense exports have surpassed 13,000 crores from about 900 crores eight years ago. We are optimistic that the objective of 2.7 lakh crore set for 2047 would be achieved and that defense exports will reach 35,000 crores by 2025, “said he.

While stressing that India has never attacked a nation or taken control of even a small portion of territory abroad, he assured the people that if there were ever to disturb the harmony in India, a befitting reply would be given.  

“India is a peaceful nation, but this does not mean it is cowardly or war-averse. We had to cope with the tense situation on the northern border with China while dealing with COVID-19. No matter how strong the opposition is, India will never submit, as evidenced by the bravery of our men during the Galwan tragedy, he remarked.

According to Mr. Singh, among the significant changes made to strengthen national security are the creation of the position of “Chief of Defence Staff” and the department of military affairs.

“While women in the armed forces are receiving permanent commissions, the National Defense Academy (NDA) doors have been opened to females.  We have also allowed the deployment of women on warships,” he said.

Mr. Singh emphasized that the government is creating a “New India” that will provide all of our friendly, peaceful nations a sense of security and confidence. At the same time, those with malicious intent would receive nothing but dust.

The Defence Minister said that India’s new anti-terrorism policy had broken the backs of those who sought to harm the unity and integrity of the country during the 2016 surgical strikes and the 2019 airstrikes on Balakot.

“A well-planned strategy was used to carry out terrorist acts from Pakistan. Through the surgical strikes in 2016 and the airstrikes on Balakot in 2019, our administration and the Armed Forces demonstrated India’s steadfast determination to stomp out terrorism after the Uri and Pulwama attacks. We proved the capacity to act on this side and, if needed, on the other side of the border. India’s image has been transformed. It is now seriously listened to on international platforms,” he said.

According to the defense minister, India’s rapid advancement on the path of development is due to the inspiration received from the heroes of the Armed Forces.

“Soldiers bear the brunt of attacks against national interests and defend the nation when the ominous clouds of war rise. He said, “The people are kept alive by the tremendous sacrifice of the slain heroes.

The generals who led India to a stunning victory are General Sam Manekshaw, General Jagjit Singh Arora, General Jacob, General Sujan Singh Uban, and General Officer in Command Air Marshal Latif will never be forgotten. Hindus, Muslims, Parsis, Sikhs, and one Jew all served as Indian soldiers throughout the conflict. It demonstrates India’s conviction toward Sarvadharma Sambhav (respect for all religions). All these brave soldiers belonged to different states with different mother tongues. They were bound by a solid and common thread of Indianness,” he said.

Mr. Singh described the residents of the border regions as strategic assets and Himachal Pradesh as a border state that is crucial to India’s national interests.

While stating that any government has to improve people’s lives, he added that the government, led by Prime Minister Modi, has given top importance to upgrading the nation’s intelligence and communication capabilities as well as its border infrastructure.

In the border regions, he said, hundreds of kilometers of roads, bridges, and tunnels have been built; the Atal tunnel in Himachal Pradesh is one of the major initiatives.

Mr. Singh paid tribute to the families of the war heroes and said that the nation will always be grateful for their efforts.

The Armed Forces, he claimed, would always be a source of inspiration for the populace, particularly the young, as they exemplify discipline, commitment to duty, patriotism, and sacrifice, and serve as a representation of pride and confidence in the country.

Background, religion, and faith are unimportant; what counts is that our national flag, the tri-color, keeps flying high, he remarked.

The first recipient of the Param Vir Chakra, Major Somnath Sharma, received it in 1947. Brigadier Sher Jung Thapa received the Maha Vir Chakra in 1948. Lt. Col. Dhan Singh Thapa received the PVC in 1962. Captain Vikram Batra received the PVC in 1999. Subedar Major Sanjay Kumar received the PVC in 1999. (1999).

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