SRI NAGAR: Sending a clear message that security remains the top priority of the Modi government, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday visited the world’s highest battlefield at Siachen glacier in Jammu and Kashmir.
He praised the resolve and commitment of troops deployed there for protecting the border and ensuring the safety of countrymen, braving extreme harsh weather and highly treacherous terrain.
He also directed troops in the Kashmir Valley to remain prepared to give a befitting reply to any misadventure from across the Line of Control. Singh, who was accompanied by General Bipin Rawat, conducted an aerial reconnaissance of the glacier, visited one of the forward posts and interacted with troops.
Addressing the soldiers, he said, “I am proud of soldiers serving in Siachen, who are leaving no stone unturned to defend the motherland. I am also proud of their parents, who have sent their children to serve the nation... I will personally send a Thank You note to them.”
“Our soldiers in Siachen are performing their duty with great courage and fortitude in extreme conditions and treacherous terrain. I salute their vigour and valour,” he said.
The Siachen base camp is situated at an average altitude of 20,000 feet and the temperature drops to minus 60 degrees Celsius in winter. Paying tributes to the 1,100-plus soldiers who died while serving in Siachen, Singh said the nation would “always remain indebted to their service and sacrifice”.
Asserting that the government was fully aware of all operational and administrative requirements for optimal functioning at Siachen, Singh assured of fulfilling the requirements of soldiers on priority.
Later, he visited Kashmir where he was briefed on the anti-militancy operations by top army commanders at the 15 Corps headquarters in Srinagar.
“He was also briefed about measures taken to strengthen counter-infiltration grid at the LoC,” an army official said.
The minister was also updated n the security measures taken to ensure smooth conduct of Amarnath Yatra, beginning July 1.