Home

March 14, 2015

Defence minister talks tough: Parrikar wants Chief of Defence post filled as he warns neighbours against taking 'panga' with India


“I think we are fit for war. But whether we are in such a condition that others will not want to have a war with us, that is a question I will be able to answer two-three years from now,” Parrikar said, implying that he had a job at hand to build the strength of the three services to offset the decision deficit of his predecessor A.K. Antony. 
Talking about India’s troubled neighbourhood, Parrikar said that everyone has at least one neighbour with whom one has issues.
To drive the point home, he broke into a simile describing the woes in the locality near his home in Goa. 
“Everyone has at least one neighbour with whom you have problems. One must prepare for the eventuality and live with the difficulties,” he said. 
“There was a family in my neighbourhood that used to make a lot of noise and create nuisance… I figured out that he was an alcoholic… I met the person who used to supply him liquor and asked him to make my neighbour stay longer at the place where he used to consume liquor,” Parrikar said, explaining how he had tackled the problem in his neighbourhood. 
“If you have strength, the neighbour will be controlled,” said Parrikar when asked about the threats posed by China and Pakistan though he emphasised that the best way was to be a good neighbour and also simultaneously prepare for any eventuality. 
Wars won 
Former Army chief Gen Bikram Singh said the armed forces have been winning the war against insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir and the north-east. 
Touching upon the larger issues plaguing the armed forces, Parrikar and Gen Singh agreed on the urgent need to appoint a Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), a proposal that has been hanging fire since 2001. 

Parrikar said that the CDS was a must and hoped to propose a mechanism for the creation of the post within the next three months. 
He said it was the key to integrate the three services, something that was currently missing.
“Integration has to be there and the Chief of Defence Staff is a must. How do you work it out? Give me some time and I will work it out because the integration of the three forces does not exist in the existing structure,” he said. 
Apart from the integration issues, one of the major stumbling blocks in the way of modernisation of the armed forces is the slow acquisition process. 
The recent cases of alleged corruption in arms deals are not helping the cause. 
Parrikar said the policy of putting a blanket ban on the tainted companies was not working. 
The defence ministry has even started giving specific waivers to ensure that the national security was not compromised. 
Citing an example, he said the army was facing problems in getting an adequate number of trucks after the supplier was blacklisted on corruption charges. 
The Army has not bought any new piece of artillery since the Bofors scandal came to light.
“Every gun in the country is called Bofors,” he said in a lighter vein to highlight how the scandal has been hogging the nation’s attention. 
Saying that he was currently busy clearing the backlog of work and projects, Parrikar promised to ramp up the speed.

dailymail

No comments:

Post a Comment