NEW DELHI: Army chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag on Tuesday said threats and challenges to India were growing because of active borders.
Accusing Pakistan of continuing to support “proxy war” in Jammu and Kashmir despite suffering casualties due to terror on its soil, the Army chief has made it clear that one would have to “wait and watch” if the Pakistan Army has had a change of heart since the gruesome attack on an Army school in Peshawar last month that drew condemnation in India.
“Pakistan is supporting proxy war in Jammu and Kashmir despite suffering casualties,” General Suhag told reporters, while addressing a customary briefing prior to the Army Day.
While supporting the Army chief’s views, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, in a blunt message to Pakistan, warned that India would take “proactive steps” to deal with proxy war by that country.
He also made it clear that for any dialogue to take place, Pakistan should first stop ceasefire violation and intrusion of terrorists.
“On proxy war, the government is very clear about what is happening. We have taken a stand and though I will not like to tell you what is the exact action we are taking...You will be able to see the difference in six months in actual figures,” Parrikar told media in Lucknow.
“We want peace with our neighbours, but if there is an attempt for proxy war, we will take some proactive steps. What kind of proactive steps cannot be revealed in a press conference,” Parrikar said.
Hitting hard on Pakistan, the Army chief also said: “The terror infrastructure in Pakistan is still intact.. In the year 2014, the Army chief claims that security agencies neutralised 110 terrorists as compare to 65 militants were killed in 2013 in the Jammu and Kashmir only.”
He also said that Indian security forces were carefully watching the situation in neighbouring Afghanistan and its possible spillover into India. General Suhag maintained that the situation in Afghanistan had definitely improved to the extent that the US feels that they could leave the country to the Afghan Army to take care of the security situation. “But definitely, the draw-down is likely to have its own effect. That cannot be ruled out. And we have to be prepared for it. Terrorist network can extend from Afghanistan to our side and J&K is one area where the effect could be felt. We are aware of this possibility and because of this we are keeping a careful watch,” he added.