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Saturday, November 27, 2021

China, Pakistan’s Ambitions Danger To Stability In Jammu & Kashmir, South Asia: Gen Bipin Rawat


New Delhi: Asserting China is making “huge” inroads in South Asia and in the Indian Ocean region to strengthen its position as an emerging global power, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat on Saturday said Beijing’s ambitions and aspirations to global power presented an “omnipresent danger” to stability in South Asia.

Delivering the first Ravi Kant Singh Memorial Lecture, the Chief of Defence Staff said of late, we are witnessing a geo-strategic competition and huge investment by China in the region to create a favourable posture to provide sufficient security to its interests, PTI reported.

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He said that Bangladesh and Myanmar have been the largest recipients of Chinese military aid in the recent past.

Stating that China’s foray into Myanmar and Bangladesh are not in India’s national interest as these are attempts to engulf India, the Chief of Defence Staff said there exists an omnipresent danger of regional strategic instability.

He added that it has the potential of threatening India’s territorial integrity and strategic importance’.

Asserting Pakistan’s state sponsored terrorism as well as by non-state actors against New Delhi is a stumbling block to peace process between the two nations, General Rawat described the partnership’ between Islamabad and Beijing on a range of issues, from China providing military hardware to Pakistan and supporting it in international fora, as an anti-India nexus.

The Chief of Defence Staff while addressing a press conference later said the border issues with China has to be viewed in its totality and not as issues pertaining to the Ladakh sector or north-eastern states.

Emphasizing that people must have faith and confidence in the system and the armed forces, he said there are suspicions between the two countries, and hence, it takes time to resolve the issues.

General Rawat said India has to step up its engagement in the neighbouring countries as a measure to counter China’s influence in the region.

“Chinese have a habit of using money power to gain popularity in a country (they are trying to influence). But as our prime minister has given a clarion call, we believe in security and growth for all,” General Rawat said.

“We have to tell our neighbours that we are here as permanent friends and engage with them on equal terms and we consider all neighbours as equal partners in development,” he added.

Commenting on the country’s defence preparedness, General Rawat said: “We are standing strong.”

He said there are adequate defence and arms systems at India’s disposal, adding the government has allowed the armed forces to procure needed armaments by invoking emergency powers.

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With regard to the recent violence against the security forces as well as civilians in Jammu and Kashmir, General Rawat said: “Our western adversary (Pakistan) is indulging in a proxy war with us. They will do anything to disturb peace in Jammu and Kashmir.”

Stating the killings in Jammu and Kashmir were an attempt by the neighbouring nation to spread fear among the people, the Chief of Defence Staff said: “We should not fear them or fall prey to such traps.”



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