Stating that no country should harbour “expansionist” ambitions, and each should develop within its boundaries, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday said that China has “said another round of talks will take place, but the dates have not been finalised” yet.
“Talks are going on, and more talks are going to happen soon,” he said.
Speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, Singh said India is not shy of taking action across the border against terrorism any longer, and that it is nearly impossible to execute another 26/11-style terror attack on Indian soil today.
Referring to the ongoing standoff with Chinese PLA at the LAC in Ladakh, Singh said: “Like Pakistan, we have another neighbour who keeps raising disputes about the border.” He said there are “perceptional differences between India and China on the border,” but there are “some agreements, protocols that are followed by armies of both countries to patrol” the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
Problems, however, occur “when agreed protocols are ignored, he said.
Singh said: “We cannot allow PLA to act on the LAC in an unilateral way under any circumstances. We do not want war with anyone, but to ensure war does not take place, it is necessary that we should always be ready for war. We want peace. Historically, India has never attacked any nation or captured an inch of any other nation. We prepare for war to prevent war.
“But I want to reiterate: nobody can occupy an inch of India’s land.”
Singh also stated that India’s forces have been given a free hand to “strongly oppose any change on LAC”.
With Thursday marking the 12th anniversary of Mumbai terror attack, which killed 166 people, Singh said, “We can assure the people that India has strengthened its internal and external security system to an extent that another 26/11 on Indian soil is now almost impossible to execute.”
He said November 26 is considered very important in terms of national security, as the Mumbai terror attack made India change its security strategy forever. “No self-respecting country can forget the 26/11 incident… I am proud that our security forces did not let a single terrorist go back alive,” he said.
Ever since Independence, he said, “there has been a constant effort by the anti-Indian forces to create an atmosphere of instability within India either by crossing the borders or through the borders…Pakistan has now tried all the tricks on terrorism.”
Singh said a special force named Sagar Prahari Bal is being prepared within the Navy, which will “not only protect naval assets present in the coastal areas, but it will also act as a force multiplier”.