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Army chief Rawat calls for a multi-pronged approach to deal with China

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(G.N.S) Dt. 12
New Delhi
– ‘Threat of CBRN weapons may become reality now’
Gen Rawat said the troop strength has gone down recently either due to the winter or because they wanted to de-escalate.
India had to intervene in Bhutanese territory in Doklam as China was trying to change the status quo by constructing a road, Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat said on Friday. He called for a multi-pronged approach to deal with an assertive China which includes diplomatic, military and partnerships with other countries in the region.
“We understand China is a powerful country, but we are not a weak nation… Dealing with China is a whole of Government approach. Diplomatic engagement with China is happening well… Focus has to shift to the northern borders, for too long we have focused on Western borders. We should start preparing for the next kind of warfare which are cyber and space,” Gen Rawat said addressing the annual press conference ahead of Army Day.
Gen Rawat called for consistent focus on the neighbourhood as part of building partnerships with like-minded countries.
“We are not getting into alliances but we are seeking support of other group of nations in the region so that we are not isolated against an assertive China. We are looking at diplomatic, military and partnering with countries in the region. We cannot let our neighbourhood drift away from us,” he observed.
Gen Rawat said that China has been constructing roads in North Doklam for many years and last June they came with large amount of equipment and soldiers which forced India to intervene on behalf of Bhutan. He said as India intervened in the territory of another country, the Ministry of External Affairs was made the sole spokesperson to avoid confusion.
“Our impression was they looked like changing the status quo. With China we have an agreement to not change status quo… This was a change of status quo by bringing the road down, so we intervened,” Gen Rawat.
Gen Rawat said the troop strength has gone down recently either due to the winter or because they wanted to de-escalate.
“Though tents and observation posts remain lot of which are temporary structures. We have seen a reduction in man power. Either because of winter or he wanted to disengage. They may come back here after winter or somewhere else. Should he come again, we will see what to do,” he stated.
He added that diplomatic efforts were on and border demarcation talks are currently under way between Bhutan and China and also stressed on the border mechanisms for resolving any issues on the ground.
On the issue of capping tuition fees for children of disabled soldiers and those killed in the line of duty, Gen Rawat said the Army would set up premier educational institutions to educate them.
The threat of the use of CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) weapons have become a reality, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat said on Friday.
“The threat of the use of CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) weapons is indeed becoming a reality particularly from the non-state actors. Use of CBRN weapons could jeopardise life health property and commerce, and then take a long time to recover,” Rawat said at the DRDO Bhawan here.
The Army Chief also warned that potential adversaries may seek to counter India’s conventional military superiority using less expensive and more attainable asymmetrical means.
To combat the hazardous weapons, Rawat suggested to “develop protection technologies, equipment and systems, and impart training to our soldiers.”
” I am sure that DRDO’s long term perspective plan in conjunction and integrated perspective plan of the services must have encompassed the development of mitigation of technologies against such CBRN threats,” he added.
The Army Chief was inaugurating a DRDO workshop and exhibition of CBRN defence technologies. “The Government asked us to come out with the new framework for this policy to be reassigned. We said that we run such premier institutes. We got in principle sanction for such schools… It will take 3-4 years. I am confident this problem will soon be overcome. Till then those genuinely effected we will take care of them,” he added.
One school will come up in Pathankot where there is a large military fraternity and the second would come up wither in Central or South India either in Bhopal or Secunderabad.

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