Army Chief General Bipin Rawat on Friday said that jawans can raise complaints internally and directly instead of resorting to social media. “Through the media, I wish to reach out to the rank and file of the Army. Whatever complaint they should have, they can address it through the excellent grievance redressal mechanism we have. Anyone irrespective of rank and service can reach out to me directly. We want them to come directly to us rather than through social media,” he said, speaking at New Delhi’s Manekshaw Centre assuring that the identity of the soldier making the complaint would not be made public.
WATCH VIDEO | Army Chief General Bipin Rawat Warns Jawans From Taking Complaints Online
General Rawat’s remarks come after a BSF constable took to social media to voice his complaint on the poor quality of food being served to the troops. BSF constable Tej Bahadur Yadav had posted a video on January 8 saying, “We don’t want to blame any government because all governments provide us with everything but some senior officials sell them off. The situation is such that we have to sometimes sleep on empty stomachs.” Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had also taken note of the video ordering an “appropriate action” into the incident. There have also been other instances of security forces personnel airing their grievances on social media.
The army chief also spoke about challenges along the national border. “We have to be concerned about proxy war and terror that are affecting secular fabric of our nation.” He also said that the situation in Jammu and Kashmir had been brought under control ‘with synergised efforts of security forces.’ He also noted that the ceasefire violations have come down. However if the numbers went up, the army would “opt for such surgical strike measures.”
General Rawat also spoke about Eastern Army Commander Lt General Praveen Bakshi who is the senior-most commander in the Army. “We reached out to each other. All that he has told me is that he respects the decision of the government and that he will support me in the organisation till the end,” he said. Lt General Bakshi was superseded when the government chose General Rawat as the Army chief in December.
A senior Army officer had earlier told The Indian Express that General Bakshi was keeping his cards close to his chest. “Lt General Bakshi is keeping his cards close to his chest. Only he knows what he is going to do. He has met the RM (Raksha Mantri or Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar) twice but there is no clarity about his future plans. He can quit even before he retires in July, and this is causing a lot of uncertainty.”