July 2017 News

Be Ready To Face Any Situation: Army Chief To Jawans

28 July 2017
The Daily Excelsior
Sanjeev Pargal

Jammu: Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat today reviewed operational preparedness of the troops and prevailing security situation along Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan, which has witnessed heavy shelling this month, leading to huge losses on Pakistan side though India also suffered casualties and some damages. Sources told the Excelsior that soon after his arrival here this morning, Gen Rawat accompanied by Northern Command chief Lt Gen Devraj Anbu visited White Knight Corps, also known as 16 Corps and headquartered at Nagrota, where they were briefed on preparedness of the troops to meet with any kind of situation by General Officer Commanding (GOC) 16 Corps Lt Gen AK Sharma. 'The emerging and dynamically changing security situation and the measures taken by the Army to thwart any misadventure by the inimical forces were discussed in detail at the meeting Gen Rawat had with the GOC-in-C Northern Command and GOC 16 Corps, which looks after twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri, which had witnessed unprecedented shelling from Pakistan this month, apart from other areas,' sources said. The top Army Commanders were appeared to have discussed strategy to counter Pakistan shelling, infiltration attempts by the militants along the LoC and strengthening deployment and infrastructure to meet with any kind of situation. Troops have been maintaining very high alert along the LoC anticipating infiltration attempts from the militants, aided and abetted by Pakistan, under the cover of shelling and firing. However, all infiltration attempts made by the militants along LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts, have been successfully thwarted by the troops. Gen Bipin Rawat, who will have a night halt at an Army formation here, visited several forward areas along Line of Control (LoC) in Rajouri and Akhnoor sectors, where he was briefed on operational readiness of the troops by the General Officer Commandings (GOCs) of Ace of Spades Division (headquartered at Rajouri) and crossed Swords Division, located at Akhnoor. The Army chief, during his visit to forward posts on the LoC, was briefed in detail on the actions being undertaken to ensure robust Counter-Infiltration Grid to ensure that the militants don't manage to sneak-in into the Indian side from across the Line of Control. Gen Rawat inter-acted with the soldiers deployed on the forward posts and exhorted the troops to continue to remain vigilant and ever-ready to meet with any kind of eventuality. Complimenting the Army formations for their unflinching efforts, the Chief of Army Staff reiterated the continued need to remain prepared in order to counter the nefarious designs of the enemy. The Army chief's visit to Jammu especially the forward areas of LoC in Rajouri sector assumed significance as it comes close on the heels of heavy mortar shelling and firing by Pakistan army especially in Nowshera and Manjakote sectors (of Rajouri) and forward areas of Poonch, where Indian troops and civilians suffered some casualties this month. However, the number of casualties and damages had been very high on Pakistan side, whose several posts and bunkers were decimated in retaliatory action by the Indian Army in which a number of Pakistani troops were killed and injured. Though there has been no major ceasefire violation along LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts this week, the villagers living in the forward areas especially in Nowshera sector were still panicky. Nearly 4000 people had left their houses during the shelling and took shelters in migrant camps set up for them. Pakistan army had also shelled civilian areas including three educational institutions in which 261 students and staff members had very narrow escape as they had to be rescued in the bullet-proof vehicles amidst shelling and firing.