Blessings of 130 cr people with you: PM Modi celebrates Diwali with soldiers in J&K’s Nowshera
New Delhi, Nov 4: India must enhance its military capabilities in line with the changing world and modes of war, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday and noted that modern border infrastructure has been built to augment connectivity and troop deployment. Modi made the remarks while addressing soldiers on the occasion of Diwali at Nowshera sector in the border district of Rajouri in Jammu and Kashmir.
While addressing soldiers in J&K's Nowshera sector, PM Modi said,''I have spent each Diwali with soldiers guarding our borders. Today, I have brought along with me the blessings of crores of Indians for our soldiers here.''
''I want to spend Diwali with family members; so I join you on festival.'' PM Narendra Modi said to soldiers.
''Our soldiers are the 'suraksha kawach' of 'Maa Bharti'. Enemies targeted Nowshera right after Independence, but I feel happy all conspiracies failed. I feel proud to say many Bravehearts have shed blood for Nowshera,'' PM Modi also said.
The prime minister lauded the role played by the brigade here in surgical strikes. India had conducted the surgical strike on September 29, 2016, across the Line of Control (LoC) as a response to a terrorist attack on an Army base in the Uri sector of Jammu and Kashmir.
Modi said many attempts were made to spread terrorism here after the surgical strike but they were given a befitting reply. India must enhance its military capabilities in line with the changing world and modes of war, the prime minister said.
He said that connectivity in border areas has improved -- be it from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh, Jaisalmer to Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Borders and coastal areas lacking normal connectivity now have roads and optical fibres, and this boosts deployment capabilities as well as facilities for soldiers, the prime minister said.
Modi also said that earlier the country had to depend mostly on imports in the defence sector but with his government's attempts indigenous capabilities have gotten a boost. He hailed the courage of soldiers and said their capability and strength has ensured peace and security for the country. "I want to spend Diwali with family members, so I join you on this festival," he said.
Since taking over as prime minister, Modi has made it a point to meet troops in a border region on Diwali, starting from a visit to Siachen in 2014. Official sources shared photographs of him at an Army post in Nowshera. Army chief General M M Naravane had carried out an aerial reconnaissance of forward areas, including Rajouri, on Wednesday and he was briefed about the prevailing security situation along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Jammu region.
An Army operation against terrorists has been going on through the forest belt in the Poonch-Rajouri area. This has been the longest such operation in the recent past and it entered the 26th day on Thursday. Meanwhile, when Modi left his residence in the morning, there were minimal security arrangements in place and no traffic route was deployed to minimise any inconvenience, official sources said.