PM hints at China, says enemies have seen ‘fire and fury’ of Indian forces
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday morning sprang a major surprise by visiting Ladakh and sent a terse message to China that the era of “expansionism” is over , asserting that India’s quest for peace should be not be misconstrued as a sign of weakness.
As the Line of Actual Control (LAC)in Ladakh remains tense for the seventh week, the Prime Minister also paid tributes to 20 Indian Army personnel who were killed in a bloody skirmish with the Chinese on June 15 in the Galwan valley.
Addressing the troops in the forward areas of Nimu at a height of 11,000 feet in Ladakh, he said the era of expansionism is over and that India’s enemies have seen the “fire and fury” of its Armed forces. Tales of the bravery and valour of the Armed forces are echoing in every part of the country, he said in an obvious reference to the fight put up by the Indian soldiers in free for all on June 15.
The Prime Minister said the world has taken note of India’s strength due to the “exemplary bravery” of the Armed forces in the recent weeks, adding history is proof that expansionists have either lost or perished.
“The era of expansionism has come to an end. This is the era of development… History has proved that expansionist forces have either lost or were forced to turn back,” he said, without directly naming China. Incidentally, the Leh-based 14 Corps is also known as “fist and fury.”
Modi further said, “Your courage is higher than the heights where you are serving today. When the safety of the country is in your hands, then there is a belief. Not only me, but the entire nation believes in you. We all are proud of you.”
He was accompanied by Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat and Army Chief Gen MM Naravane.
In his address, Modi spoke at length about how the virtues of peace, friendship and courage have been a part of India’s culture since time immemorial. He recalled that India has always given a befitting reply to anyone who has tried to disturb the prevailing atmosphere of peace and progress.
The Prime Minister affirmed that India is committed to peace and friendship but this commitment to peace should not be seen as India’s weakness. Today, India is becoming stronger, be it in naval might, air power, space power and the strength of our Army, he said, adding modernisation of weapons and upgrading of infrastructure have enhanced the country’s defence capabilities manifold.
He also said the Government is giving adequate focus on requirement of Armed forces.
In his address, Modi remembered all the “proud sons of Mother India” who made the supreme sacrifice at the Galwan Valley, adding those who were martyred belong to all parts of the country and “epitomised our land’s ethos of bravery”.
He affirmed that be it Leh-Ladakh, Kargil or the Siachen Glacier, be it the high mountains or the icy cold water that flows in the rivers, these are testimony to the gallantry of India’s Armed Forces.
The senior commanders later briefed the Prime Minister on the actual ground situation. He also interacted with the troops of the Army, Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and the IAF. Modi also visited the Leh based military hospital and interacted with some of the soldiers injured in the brawl on June 15 and now recuperating
Saturday, 04 July 2020 | PNS | New DelhiLeh
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