Indian army chief pitches for control over mosques, madrasas, schools in Kashmir

Indian army chief pitches for control over mosques, madrasas, schools in Kashmir

Army chief Bipin Rawat said that the army is working on evolving a better system for providing aid being to children of martyrs and those disabled in action, after government put a Rs 10,000 cap on the monthly fund. However, there could be some movement once the winter months are over. "The Chinese are still there in north Doklam area".

"We will not allow our territory to be invaded upon. Now the time has come for us to focus on the northern border...therefore our infrastructure development on the northern border has to be speeded up". Why are they taking risks? Gen Rawat said, "We understand China is a powerful country but we are not a weak nation". This, he said, will lead to cutting off routes of infiltration used by militants after crossing the LoC, from where they move to south Kashmir.

"Even if it would have escalated we were prepared (as) the terrain usually favours us".

"US has exerted pressure on Pakistan, but there are compulsions on USA also to maintain relation with Pakistan", Gen Rawat said adding that both Pakistan and the U.S. understand this. We can not allow our neighbours Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, to drift away from us.

The Army chief was sceptical about US President Donald Trump's stern warning to Pakistan against harbouring terrorists leading to any concrete change on the ground as far as India was concerned. Though the government is dealing with China in a holistic manner, with the diplomatic engagement "going well", India should take care to ensure its neighbours like Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Myanmar, Bhutan and Afghanistan "do not drift away" from it. Rawat said the troops "were ready to cater" to any situation should the need arise.

"We will call the (nuclear) bluff of Pakistan". Claiming that the Army has achieved success in destroying Pakistani posts on the LoC, Gen Rawat claimed that while "both sides have suffered casualties on the LoC, they are much higher - at least three or four times (higher) - on Pakistani side".