Unsure of China's motives, but 1962 repeat not possible: Army chief
Army Chief General V K Singh has said India was "not sure" of China's intentions for developing infrastructure along the borders, but a repeat of the 1962 aggression was "never" possible.delhi Updated: Nov 07, 2010 13:14 IST
Army Chief General V K Singh has said India was "not sure" of China's intentions for developing infrastructure along the borders, but a repeat of the 1962 aggression was "never" possible.
Describing the regional security situation as "fragile," Singh said Pakistan Army's India-centric posturing and diversion of US counter-terrorism military aid against India were matters of concern.
"China is doing a great amount of infrastructure development, which it says is for locals of the area. No bones about it, no crib about it. But our problem is we are not very sure about the intentions. And when intentions change, with this capability, things can go wrong. And that is what is a matter of concern," he said. "But, there is going to be no no 1962. Never," he said, referring to the Chinese aggression of Indian territory that year.
Singh reasoned that he did not see the kind of signages of 1962 at present, as there were no military build up or territorial claims that were witnessed just before the only time the two countries went to war.
"Absolutely, with full conviction," he said, when asked if he was confident there would be no no repeat of history. "Things are better than what it was in 1962," he said, noting that situation along the borders was peaceful "to an extent" and the stand-offs were within the known parameters governed by Confidence Building Measures, with "nothing going astray".
There were also mechanisms between the two countries now to take care of such stand-offs. But there was a question mark over the intentions of China's infrastructure development, he said.
On regional security, Singh said, "Any country which has unsettled borders, which are undemarcated and with problems, the security situation in the overall calculus remains fragile. It remains a cause for concern and that is what it is." On Pakistan, the Army Chief told the 'Devil's Advocate' talk show on CNN-IBN that "the major problem is that the terrorist infrastructure is intact (across the border)".
Pointing to Pakistan Army Chief Ashfaq Pervez Kayani's remarks that his whole Army was India-centric, Singh said, "when you combine this (with the economic condition, terror and political uncertainty there), it means the following: That the proxy war will carry on. And they will keep looking for an alibi. And this is a matter of concern."
On the USD two billion American military aid to Pakistan for war against terror, Singh said all aid that were ever given to Pakistan were diverted against India and there were credible inputs to support this charge.
"Historically, all aid that has ever come to Pakistan, for whatever purposes, despite the assurances, have been used against India. We have credible inputs to say that out of this assistance to fight terror in Afghanistan and coalition support, a fair amount is being funnelled for upgrading capability against India," the Army Chief said.
But, Singh said, India was not concerned over build up of capabilities of the Pakistan Army by inducting new technology and that it was ready to meet the challenge.
"Pakistan is doing the same and we are doing the same. I am not really much concerned about where they have gone. But what I am concerned is that I should be able to meet the type of threat that comes up. Let me assure you, we are prepared to meet any challenge that comes to our nation," Singh said.
On the possibility of a two-front war with Pakistan and China, Singh said the Army was capable of meeting any threat that the country may face, whether on one side of the border or on two sides.
"But time will decide. I am quite sure our political and diplomatic initiatives will be able to mesh in with what we want to do militarily and achieve right type of results that is required by the country," he said.