The General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, Lt Gen KJ Singh on Friday said that Pakistan is going to remain a problem for India. Speaking at a seminar organised by Western Command and Panjab University on the 1965 Indo-Pak war, he said that “despite our desire, despite our wish that Pakistan is a failed state, Pakistan will crumble, it is a country which is going to remain a problem for us”.
The Western Army Commander went on to say that, “We have to prepare ourselves. Indian Army is prepared, Western Command is prepared. We spare no effort. We are always upto the challenge if it comes our way.”
Referring to the repeated military engagements of Pakistan with India, Lt Gen KJ Singh recited a couplet composed from Pakistan’s perspective, saying “saintaalees mein, painsath mein aur Kargil main pittey hum, ikathar mein aur Siachen mein luttey hum, kuch to hai Pakistan ki fitrat mein, ki talkhiyan aur jahalat hoti nahi kam” (In 1947, 1965 and in Kargil we were beaten, we lost in 1971 and in Siachen, yet there is something in the nature of Pakistan that bitterness and ignorance is not getting reduced).
The Army Commander said that Pakistan is a country which is unique in the sense that it does not learn from its lessons. “It does something silly in ’47 with Razakars and which it repeats in ’65 and wants to do it again in Kargil, despite the famous saying that doing the same thing again and again and expecting results is the hallmark of being idiotic. Yet it is a country which we have to face,” he said.
Earlier, speaking about the positive effects of the 1965 war with Pakistan and on the Indian military preparedness Lt Gen KJ Singh said that it was genuinely a nation’s war in which even civilians came forth and took part wholeheartedly. He said, when Pakistan launched its best trained troops of Special Services Group (SSG) on raids in Halwara and Pathankot these ultimate elite troops of Pakistan were captured by the civilians in that area.
The Army Commanders said that the Indian riposte in 1965 also enabled the Army to give a firm reply to the Chinese in 1967 when an confrontation took place between Indian and Chinese troops in Nathu la and Yak La. “Not only did we not give ground but we also created a situation where the Chinese had to bring trucks to take away their dead bodies. We lost 100 odd boys but they lost 400. After 1962 and 1965 in 1967 we managed to tell the Chinese that we are no pushover. Now it is a different paradigm,” he said.
The seminar was held as part of a series held by the Western Command to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1965 war across its area of operations. It was attended by several serving and retired officers including the General Officer Commanding of Jalandhar-based 11 Corps, Lt Gen JS Cheema, former Defence Secretary, Shekhar Dutt and former Ambassador KC Singh.