Custom Search Engine - Scans Selected News Sites


Thursday, 16 October 2014

From Today's Papers - 16 Oct 2014

How ceasefire violations stopped then
Brig Jagbir Singh Grewal (retd)

OUR Army personnel have always shown a remarkable humane approach, more so, whenever the civil population is involved, even if it is Pakistan’s population.
In earlier times in J&K, no barbed wire fencing barricaded the India-Pak Line of Control (LoC). Lack of fencing proved quite a boon for Pakistani villagers settled across the LoC to sneak into India's side, mainly for tree or grass cutting. The trend was to venture into the Indian side, but remain just close to the LoC for such misdemeanors, and flee back when detected. Such incursions were quite a nuisance, but tree cutting could be easily detected due to the 'tak, tak' noise of the axe. A considerate, humanitarian view was adopted because the civil population was involved. According to the Standing Procedure, we would fire a warning shot close to the miscreant, warning him to move back. In case the culprit did not desist, the second shot to kill or incapacitate him was to be fired after the lapse of a few minutes. However, such an occasion hardly arose. Though at times, a stubborn culprit would enjoy an interval of a couple of hours, and re-appear to pursue his hazardous but lucrative task.

One sultry noon, an old man ventured and sat just close to the LoC for grass cutting. He had taken a shrewd decision to hide in the tall grass and simultaneously wield his sickle. The thick, green, crunchy grass was irresistible fodder. His own side of the LoC had been denuded of such grass as soon as it had erupted, as the grazers were many. It was a risky mission, but he had done his calculations. When confronted, he could just take a side roll off the cliff and roll over into his side of the LoC.

Our patrol positioned in bunkers in close proximity of the LoC noticed this to and fro swaying of the tall grass. Suspecting it to be either some animal or at worst an infiltrator, our jawan shouted, “Kaun hai”? He was just about to fire his weapon when the old man hastily stood up. He waved his sickle and shrieked in a quivering voice that he was just cutting grass. He was told to drop his sickle and come over to the bunker. He came over and pleaded for mercy and for water in the same breath. A water bottle was instantly handed over to him. After the old man had taken a large sip of water, it dawned on the patrol party that the old man was not feigning but was actually shell shocked. He divulged that he was the Numberdar's father and much more. He was apprehensive that a frantic search must be on to trace him. Soon the Pakistani post commander emerged holding a white flag and stood partially screened by a huge rock. He repeatedly screamed at the top of his voice in chaste Punjabi, “Khuda de vaaste, saada budda wapis kar diyo, sadi naukri kharab ho gayi” (for God’s sake, return our old man, our job is spoiled). This melodrama continued for some time till our post commander responded that intrusions across the LoC should be stopped. The Pakistani post commander vowed, “Kasam se, koi bhi ab LoC paar nahin karega, aur lakri ya ghas katne nahin ayega” (henceforth no one will neither cross the LoC nor indulge in tree or grass cutting).

The old man was given a hearty meal and 'shakarparas' by our jawans from their own tiffin boxes and sent back. Sure enough, the Pakistani post commander kept his word, for during our tenure, no foolhardy daredevil ventured into our side of the LoC. The Pakistani post commander had indeed brokered peace and no ceasefire violation occurred thereafter.
 China warns India against paving road in Arunachal
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 15
A fresh war of words today broke out between India and China over building a highway in Arunachal Pradesh even as the two nations have separately agreed to conduct a four-day joint military exercise.

China disputes India’s control over the North Eastern State. The two countries have an undemarcated 3,488 km Line of Actual Control (LAC).

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei at a press conference in Beijing today said: “A dispute exists in the eastern sector of the China-India boundary, pending final settlement of the boundary question. We hope that the Indian side will refrain from taking actions in disputed areas that may complicate the (boundary) question.”
Hong’s remarks come a day after Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju said a road was planned between Mago-Thingbu in Tawang to Vijaynagar in Changlang district of Arunachal. This is the east-west axis all along the disputed Macmohan Line that defines the northern limit of the state and is disputed by China.

“The proposed 2,000-km road is still in the conceptual stage. It would be beneficial from the security point of view but would also accelerate border area development,” said Rijiju, who is also an MP from the same state and is also looking after border area management in the Ministry of Home Affairs.

Hong reacted to the Indian proposal by advising New Delhi “…safeguard peace and tranquility of the border areas and create conditions for the settlement of the boundary question and the development of China-India relations”. He went on to say that the China-India boundary question is an issue left over by the western (British) colonists and should be properly resolved with concerted efforts.

This is the first flare-up between the two neighbours separated by the Himalayas since troops on either side were asked to withdraw from a two-week stand-off on September 25 at Chumar.

Meanwhile, military authorities of the two countries have decided to conduct a four-day joint military exercise from November 3 at Pune.

Called the ‘hand-in-hand’ exercise, this will be the fourth edition since it started in 2007 with Kunming in China hosting the first edition, followed by an exercise in Belgaum Karnataka in 2008. The third edition was hosted after five years at Miaoergang in China. India had suspended all military-diplomatic relations with China and called off all such exercises after Beijing refused a visa to a Lt General on the premise that he was serving in J&K.

The original venue of the exercise was Bathinda in Punjab. However, China said the location was too “hot” in terms of weather. Sources said the average mean temperature for Bathinda during November is 28.9 degree Celsius, but this was more of a diplomatic way for Beijing to avoid sending its Army close to Pakistan border.

Joint military exercise

    Both countries have agreed to conduct four-day joint military exercise in Pune from November 3
    Called ‘hand-in-hand’ exercise, it will be the fourth edition since it started in 2007
    India had suspended all military-diplomatic relations with China after Beijing refused visa to a Lt Gen on the premise that he was serving in J&K
ISIS Threat a Concern For Security Agencies, Warns Top Army Commander in Kashmir
The recent display of ISIS flags in Kashmir is a cause of "serious concern," Lieutenant General Subrata Saha, the top army commander in the region, said today. "ISIS has the capacity of attracting youths and that is a concern for us," he added.

His comments come a day after Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said ISIS has no presence in his state.  "You have to understand that no ISIS group has been identified so far in the Valley. The flag of the ISIS was waved by some idiots "he said. Last week, the ISIS flag was carried by men at a public park after Eid prayers.

Lt Gen Saha is the Commanding Officer of the Chinar Corps or 15 Corps, which is tasked with guarding the border with Pakistan and combatting militancy in the region.

Intelligence officials have lately been trying to determine whether ISIS is galvanizing support among Kashmiri youth; they've expressed their concern over potential online recruiting.

ISIS flags and banners appeared in the summer on three different occasions.

The first reported sighting in Kashmir was on June 27, intelligence sources have told NDTV. This was followed by two more incidents on Eid. Officials, however, do not rule more such incidents going unreported.  The first sighting was reported from Zadibal - a Shia-dominated area in Srinagar.
Boundary Disturbance to be Taken Up in Army Commanders' Conference
NEW DELHI: As India faces disturbance along its boundaries with Pakistan as well as China, the final day of the army commanders' conference is to witness a detailed presentation on the scenario.

The four day conference of top Army commanders, which concludes here Thursday, is expected to discuss the ceasefire violations by Pakistan and transgressions by China.

China's objection to building road network along the border by India is also expected to figure significantly, top army officials said.

Following this, a presentation on the issue is also expected to be made to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, when he will meet the top commanders of all three forces in the combined commanders conference Friday.

As the chairman of chiefs of staff Committee, Air Force chief Arup Raha will be the first to brief the prime minister on the issues of concern for the three forces.

Navy chief R.K. Dhowan and Army chief Dalbir Singh Suhag will also outline the challenges in the current neighbourhood and global scenario.

This will be the prime minister's first meeting with all top commanders in the war room here at the defence ministry headquarters.

China Wednesday said India should not take any action that may complicate the situation in disputed border areas.

The remarks come in the wake of comments made Tuesday by India's Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, that there were plans to construct a 2,000-km-long road along the international border between Mago-Thingbu in Tawang district and Vijaynagar in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh.

The four day conference also discussed issues like management of defence land, increasing officer intake and management of human resource, how to improve service conditions and welfare of the junior commissioned officers (JCOs).
Indian Army recovers Pakistan-origin mine along LoC in Poonch
Jammu: Army has foiled a cross-border plan to plant IEDs and target patrolling troops as they recovered one such Pakistan-made mine along Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district.

"Pakistan origin claymore mine along with a knife, shawl, tracksuit and caps was recovered on LoC in Saujiyan Sector in Poonch on 14 October 2014 by an alert LoC domination patrol", Public Relation Officer (PRO), Ministry of Defence (MoD), Jammu, Lt Col Manish Mehta said on Wednesday.

The mine recovery reaffirms the handiwork of inimical terrorists and subversive elements in spreading acrimonious activities on LoC and hinterland, he said.
"The Indian Army continues to enhance and upgrade its vigil on a daily basis resulting in such recovery of lethal mine which has 800 pellets and has a killing area of 50mtrs and danger area of around 200 meters", Lt Col Mehta said.

The Indian Army is fully prepared and geared up to handle any such misadventure or nefarious design of terrorists and inimical elements, he said.

"With no head way being made on any ground whether the IB or LoC. Inimical elements have now started taking assistance from the terrorists in planting IED and mines on the LoC", Lt Col Mehta said.

Pointing towards the incidents of IED blast in Balnoi Sector on 10 October 2014, he said "it was one such incident".

on Tuesday, some suspected persons were challenged by the troops along LoC, Col Harpreet Singh said adding they escaped leaving behind a bag, containing the mine weighing 7.2 kgs.
LoC firing: Angry India retaliates with strong counter-attack, 15 killed in Pak
As ceasefire violations and heavy firing and shelling by Pakistan continued along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, India responded with the Border Security Force promising to "retaliate effectively".
A Hindustan Times report said that in the counter-attack launched by India, 37 Pakistani posts had been targeted by the Indian army, resulting in 15 deaths and more than 30 injuries on the Pakistani side and serious damage to the outposts manned by Pakistan Rangers.

"While India has no intention of escalating the situation on the Jammu border, there is no question that the Pakistanis will be allowed to go without punishment,” said a senior South Block official quoted in the HT report. Some sources also said that the Pakistan Rangers were holding fire after the strong retaliation by the Indian army. India had responded to Pakistani firing in Arnia, Raghubir Singh Pura, Ramgarh, Samba, Akhnoor and Pargwal.

According to an Indian Express report, BSF officers also said they would not hold any flag meetings with Pakistan to lower tensions. This is an unusual move because India has held flag meetings with Pakistan every time the ceasefire was violated in the past.

BSF DG DK Pathak told The Indian Express, “This time we are not going to speak to Pakistan nor ask them for a flag meeting. During the last flag meeting on August 24, it was decided by both sides to maintain peace along the border. They started (shelling) again after 35 days, and that too on Dussehra. We have decided to be aggressive and will retaliate effectively.”

The report also said that the Indian army saw this attack as a desperate move by Pakistan to allow terrorists to enter India before winter sets in. The same sources also said that the Indian army had given a befitting reply to the attack from Pakistan. "We are more alert, and area domination drills such as patrolling, ambushes have been have been stepped up,” said an army official.

Another Indian Express report said that the Indian army's tough response to Pakistan was conveyed through Director General of Military Operations (DGMO)-level telephonic conversations. "Directors of Military Operations of the two countries held telephonic talks at 11.30am. The Pakistani side complained that India has resorted to unprovoked ceasefire violation. We said that it is instead the Pakistani side which has carried out unprovoked firing,” said a Defence Ministry official in the report.

A DNA report had also said that the DGMO-level talks, which lasted for about five minutes, failed to achieve any breakthrough. "Government sources here made it clear that it was not a regular and normal weekly telephonic talk that takes place between the directors general of military operations" said the report.

A senior Home Ministry official also told the Indian Express that during the earlier ceasefire violations in July and August, which had lasted for 43 days, India had tried contacting Pakistan at least 18 times for a flag meeting.

Even as the Indian army officials are clear on their stand on the attacks from Pakistan, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) officials seem to be vague on their stand. A Times of India report said that the MHA had on Tuesday morning sent out a message to the BSF DG DK Pathak to hold a flag meeting with Pakistan. However, by the same afternoon, the plan was dropped on the pretext of "observing the behaviour of Pakistan."

The MHA U-turn comes even as Home Minister Rajnath Singh seemed to have a similar aggressive stand as that of the Indian army. "It has been conveyed in no uncertain terms to Pakistan that ground realties in India have changed. If the violations continue, the army and every youth of this country are ready to give a befitting reply to Pakistan," he had said in the TOI report.

Even Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, soon after recuperating from a surgery, said, "Let everybody be assured that our armed forces, our paramilitary forces are fully ready and they are responding to… these provocations," according to Indian Express. The DNA report added that Jaitley held separate meetings with defence secretary Radha Krishna Mathur and three service chiefs to assess the situation.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Mail your comments, suggestions and ideas to me

Template created by Rohit Agarwal