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India believes in winning hearts, not land: Rajnath

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. File

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. File   | Photo Credit: PTI

India has never attacked anywhere to capture the land of others and India believes in winning hearts, not land, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Friday.

“Whatever we do in national security, we always do it for self defence, not for attacking others. If an enemy country ever attacked us, like every time, we will give a befitting reply,” Mr. Singh said in the customary address to the armed forces ahead of Independence Day.

Also read: LAC standoff | Defence Ministry takes down report on Chinese transgressions beginning early May

The Minister’s comments come amid the ongoing standoff with China along the border in Eastern Ladakh, which has now gone on for over 100 days. Chinese troops continue to remain in Indian-held territory in several places despite several rounds of military and diplomatic talks aimed at disengagement and de-escalation.

Mr. Singh stressed that the government is doing everything necessary to keep the morale of the Armed Forces high and to fulfil all their operational requirements.

Also read: LAC standoff | China has preferred talks, says Rajnath Singh

Amid the ongoing standoff, the Defence Ministry has given the Armed Forces emergency financial powers to procure weapons systems upto ₹300 crore on an urgent basis without any further clearances to cut short the procurement cycle, the Defence Ministry said. The Services have embarked on major procurements of ammunition, anti-tank missiles, man portable air defences, unmanned aerial vehicles among others.

Last week, the Defence Ministry took down a document uploaded on its website that admitted Chinese transgressions into Indian territory in Eastern Ladakh beginning early May and also said the present standoff “is likely to be prolonged.”

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Printable version | Sep 28, 2020 2:02:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/india-believes-in-winning-hearts-not-land-rajnath/article32356832.ece

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