Rajnath reviews operational issues, preparedness at MoD meet

Calls separate meetings of 3 Services

Sanjeev Pargal
JAMMU, June 7: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today reviewed operational matters at a high-level meeting of senior officers of the Ministry after which he decided to call separate meetings of Indian Army, Air Force and Navy to discuss operational preparedness of the troops along all the frontiers including Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier, Rajnath Singh, who had undertaken his first visit to Ladakh and Kashmir regions of the State immediately after taking over charge of the Defence Ministry in Modi 2.0 Government, had also met three Service Chiefs.
The Service Chiefs were reported to have given briefing to the Defence Minister on security situation, operational preparedness and other aspects.
An official statement issued by the Ministry of Defence this evening said Rajnath Singh took a meeting of senior officers of the Defence Ministry to review operational matters and procurement issues of the Armed Forces during which he discussed important revenue procurement cases regarding maintenance of platforms and assets with the Armed Forces.
“The Defence Minister was briefed by the officers regarding ongoing infrastructure projects and plans for future up gradation. The Minister also reviewed working and matters related to the Indian Coast Guard,” the Defence Ministry statement said.
It added that Rajnath Singh instructed that separate meetings in respect of the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force may be convened to discuss operational preparedness of the Armed Forces.
Today’s meeting was attended by Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra and Secretary Defence Finance Gargi Kaul along with other senior officers of the Ministry.
Sources said Rajnath Singh took detailed brief on the situation prevailing along Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan and Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country. India shares LoC with Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir and LAC with China in five States including J&K, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.
According to sources, keeping infiltration by the militants from Pakistan through the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir to bare minimum level or bringing it to zero level, was high on agenda of the Defence Ministry, which Rajnath had also discussed with top Army officials at Srinagar Corps Headquarters during his visit to Ladakh and Kashmir on June 3.
Apart from security situation and operational preparedness, sources said, requirements of all three forces including Army, Air Force and Navy were also top priority of the Defence Ministry for which Rajnath Singh will hold separate meetings with senior officers of three Services.
The land related issues of all three forces were too a priority, sources said.
Sources said there was major focus of the Defence Ministry on anti-terror operations in the Kashmir valley and Shri Amarnath Ji yatra, which will start on July 1 this year. The 46-day pilgrimage will conclude on August 15 coinciding with Raksha Bandhan and Shravan Purnima.
The Army will be entrusted with the task of manning heights in South Kashmir Himalayas during the yatra besides the National Highways from Pathankot to Srinagar along with para-military and Jammu and Kashmir Police personnel. Security arrangements for the pilgrimage have already started in advance and were reviewed by the Defence Minister during his visit to 15 Corps Headquarters on June 3.
Two days after taking charge as Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh had also visited Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battle field, where he interacted with soldiers and stressed that the Government will fulfill their requirements in all respects.