President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, appreciated the “grit and determination” of the armed forces in dealing with the situation at the border and also during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Addressing student officers of the 77th staff course of the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington on Wednesday, Mr. Kovind referred to the pandemic and said that it has impacted all walks of life.
“Very recently I had an opportunity to interact with our officers and soldiers in the Kashmir valley. I felt very happy to observe their high morale and dedication to duty. Most of you have been among the frontline warriors, dealing with these challenges. The country appreciates your commitment and contribution,” he said.
“The recent past has been very difficult for the entire humanity. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all walks of life. I have been told that Defence Services Staff College has successfully run the scheduled courses by effectively adopting a hybrid system blending conventional and online learning,” he said.
Mr. Kovind said that the armed forces of the country were among “the most respected entities” of our great nation. “They have rendered invaluable service to the nation during the times of war and peace. They have discharged their duties with dedication and courage while facing internal and external security challenges, and in times of natural calamities,” he said.
The President also emphasised the challenges and changing complexities of national security and defence. “Geo-strategic and geo-political compulsions and many other factors have made the security landscape more complex. Low-intensity conflicts, counter- terrorism and non-combat conflicts pose different challenges. There is a need to have a thorough understanding of all aspects. In these changing times, we have to think of new ways to secure our national interests and ensure our national security. This would require a fresh approach,” he said.
“The emerging threats in the cyber world, and space require state-of- the-art technological responses. Use of advanced technology by non-state actors also calls for upgraded response. Issues like climate change may have impact on security preparedness. All such issues influence the security calculus of the nation. You have to comprehend their implications so that you are better prepared to deal with them,” he noted.