India never eyes anyone else’s territory but will hit back with “double the force” if its sovereignty is ever challenged, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.
Speaking at an event to mark the 75th anniversary of the proclamation of the Azad Hind government by Subhas Chandra Bose, PM Modi said that efforts are underway to make the lives of soldiers easier by extending them with better facilities and providing the armed forces with better technology and the latest weapons.
Modi also announced that a national award in the name of Subhash Chandra Bose would be given every year to those police personnel who did “exemplary work” in the rescue-and-relief operations during any kind of disasters. The PM said his government took decisions, such as providing benefits of ‘one rank, one pension’ to ex-servicemen and carrying out surgical strikes across the Line of Control.
Modi said that “arrears worth Rs 11,000 crore have been released for ex-servicemen under the ‘one rank, one pension’ (OROP) scheme. OROP, coupled with recommendations of the seventh pay commission, have given “double bonanza” to former servicemen.”
The prime minister also alerted people about the forces inside and outside India which were working against the country by targetting its constitutional values. “A feeling of nationalism and “Indianness” was necessary to counter such designs,” he added.
Referring to the opposition faced by Bose when he set off to establish an all women unit of the Indian National Army — the Rani Jhansi Regiment, PM Modi said that it would complete 75 years of its establishment on Monday.
Citing the example of the decision allowing women in the army to opt for a permanent commission from short service commission following a transparent procedure, he said that the government was trying to fulfil the dreams of Bose.
“The air force is set to have the first batch of women fighter pilots and the work on the National War Memorial is in its last stages,” he added.
BJP desperately trying to rewrite history, says Congress
Accusing BJP of trying to appropriate every national legacy, Congress said the saffron party was desperate to rewrite history. “A desperate BJP is trying to rewrite history and create an imagined rivalry between Sardar Patel and Jawaharlal Nehru and between Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and Nehru. It has used auspicious occasions for these cheap political tricks,” Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said.
Addressing a press conference, Singhvi said Patel, in his letter to Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, had stated that the “activities of the Hindu Mahasabha were a clear threat to the existence of the government and the activities had not died down, despite the ban”.
“On the other hand, the RSS’s mentor, (Vinayak Damodar) Savarkar’s Hindu Mahasabha, was advocating people to get recruited in the British army. RSS leader (MS) Golwalkar had called the necessity of throwing the British out of the country ‘shallow nationalism’,” he said.
Singhvi also pointed out that Nehru was one of the lawyers of Bose during his INA trials. “Was there any person from the RSS to support Netaji? Why does Prime Minister Modi use every auspicious occasion as a political tool?” he said.