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No women to be recruited in combat mission: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar announced on Saturday that women will not be recruited for any combat operations in armed forces due to the fear of their safety. However they would be encouraged to join other operational areas of their choices.

Talking about the heinous possibilities of torture they might suffer, if held captive by the counter forces, he added that, “No. Think of what can happen if a woman is taken as a prisoner in combat operation.”

“Barring combat role, we are increasing the participation of women in every other activity of the armed forces in a phased manner,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the passing out parade of the 128th course at the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla.

Addressing the issue of the shortage of officers in the defence forces, Parrikar said, “The problem is not as severe as being perceived by the media or in general.”

“Each year, around 800 to 1,000 officers are retiring from the services. The present shortfall of 49,000 officers appears mainly on account of the requirement of the Mountain Brigade, which is yet to be established completely. Otherwise, the (demand-supply) gap has been bridged to some extent,” he added.

According to the information provided by him, three premier institutes, Air, Water and Land forces, will be enhancing the number of candidates from existing 1950 to 2400 in next two years.

Addressing the cadets during the ceremony, he emphasised on the need to stay mentally aware about the changes around the world, including technological advancement and changing strategies of warfare.

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Terrorist Safe Havens Should Be Eliminated: Rajnath Singh

Rajnath Singh said in Bangkok that the international community should come together to disrupt terrorist networks

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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in Bangkok on Monday that the international community should come together to eliminate terrorist safe havens. Wikimedia Commons

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in Bangkok on Monday that the international community should come together to eliminate terrorist safe havens and disrupt their networks and financing in order to thwart cross-border movements for achieving sustainable regional security is achieved.

Singh was addressing the sixth ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Thailand, which holds the rotating chairmanship of the regional framework this year. Describing terrorism as the most heinous cross-border crime, Singh said some states have been using terror to pursue their political goals.

“It is so much worse when terrorists are aided, abetted, armed, financed and sheltered by States. The interplay between states and non-state actors, used as proxies to foment violence, has worsened this menace. The persistence of State-sponsored terrorism is not just a painful cancer, it is also the leading reason for unsustainable security,” said Singh.

Rajnath Singh
Rajnath Singh says that The persistence of State-sponsored terrorism is the leading reason for unsustainable security. Wikimedia Commons

The theme of the meeting this year is ‘Sustainable Security.’ Singh said there is a need for a more cooperative, equitable and consultative paradigm to deal with the broad and complex security challenges to find sustainable solutions.

Singh further said that India’s Indo-Pacific vision is based on the idea of sustainable security as it focuses on a free, open, inclusive and rules-based region in which there is respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of all natikons.

“Our region must remain open and welcoming to the interests of all, those who live in it and others whose interests are in it. In short, our approach to security in the Indo-Pacific is sustainable by definition because it emphasises Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR),” added Singh.

On negotiations for a Code of Conduct for the South China Sea, Singh said the outcome of these talks will be in keeping with all relevant international laws, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. He said the forum promotes freedom of navigation, overflight and lawful commerce and also emphasised the need to protect the rights of States that are not party to these negotiations.

Also Read- India Still Projected To Be The Fastest Growing Economy Among G-20 Nations

Singh emphasied that India looks forward to the progress made through dialogue in addressing all related issues, including the proliferation trail that links South and East Asia on the issue of denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. “As dialogue remains on the table, we hope missile launches and such destabilising activities will cease”, he said.

During the course of his address, Singh said India is eager to co-chair the India-Indonesia Expert Working Group on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) in the next cycle. (IANS)