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Abrogation of Article 370 'historic step': General Naravane at 72nd Army Day function


NEW DELHI: Army chief General Manoj Naravane on Wednesday said that the abrogation of Article 370 has adversely affected plans of the "western neighbour", apparently referring to Pakistan and its proxies.

Addressing the Army personnel on the occasion of Army Day here, Naravane reiterated that India has zero-tolerance against terrorism.

"Abrogation of article 370 is a historic step which will connect Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of the country. The decision has adversely affected the plans of western neighbour and its proxies. We have zero-tolerance against terrorism. We have many options to give a reply to terrorists and will not hesitate to use them,' he said.

In August last year, the government abrogated Article 370 of the Constitution, which conferred special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated it into two Union Territories -- Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir.

Naravane said that the security has increased in North East areas due to continuous efforts of Indian Army and Assam Rifles and added that talks with many insurgent groups are underway.

The Army chief said that the force is increasing its capabilities in space, cyber, special operations and electronic warfare.

"We are also eyeing on future forms of battle. In the 21st century, the creation of integrated battle groups is an important step," Naravane said.

He said that there will be a demand of high-level operation preparedness in the coming time."Indian Army is ready to face challenges today and is capable to face expectation of the future," Naravane added.

The Army also showcased its military might and some of its state-of-the-art assets at the majestic Army Day parade on Wednesday.

Naravane, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh and Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat were present on the occasion.

Army's Captain Tania Shergil, the first woman Parade Adjutant, is set to lead all-men contingents at the Cariappa Parade Ground in Delhi Cantt, officials said.

The Army Day is celebrated on January 15 every year to mark Lt Gen K M Cariappa taking over as commander-in-chief of the Indian Army in 1949 from General Francis Butcher, the last British commander-in-chief of India.

This is the 72nd Army Day and it is the first time that a chief of defence staff is attending it.

PM hails Chinar Corps

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday hailed the valour and professionalism of the Chinar Corps personnel who escorted a pregnant woman to a hospital through heavy snowfall in the Kashmir Valley.

The Chinar Corps, an infantry field formation of the Indian Army which is presently located in Srinagar and responsible for military operations in the valley, posted a video on Twitter showing Army personnel and civilians escorting the woman on a stretcher.

"During heavy snowfall, an expecting mother Mrs Shamima, required emergency hospitalisation. For 4 hours over 100 Army persons & 30 civilians walked with her on stretcher through heavy snow. Baby born in hospital, both mother & child doing fine," it tweeted tagging Modi.

Replying to the tweet, Modi hailed the Army's humanitarian spirit.

"Our Army is known for its valour and professionalism. It is also respected for its humanitarian spirit. Whenever people have needed help, our Army has risen to the occasion and done everything possible! Proud of our Army. I pray for the good health of Shamima and her child," the prime minister posted on Twitter.

(With PTI Inputs)