Rajnath Singh talks tough, says Pakistan not mending its ways
The Pakistani Rangers have been carrying out indiscriminate shelling and firing in Arnia, RS Pura and Ramgarh sectors in the Jammu and Samba districts since Monday.india Updated: May 22, 2018 22:20 IST
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday Pakistan was not “mending its ways”, adding that Indian border forces were giving befitting replies to repeated incidents of unprovoked firing by the neighbour. He said the government will never seek answers from Indian forces on “how they chose to retaliate” to ceasefire violations along the border.
“This (Pakistan’s acts) can be a subject of research and these activities of the neighbour are hard to understand,” Singh said in his keynote speech at the Border Security Forces’ 16th investiture ceremony in New Delhi.
New Delhi had on May 16 announced a halting of operations against militants in J&K during Ramzan to help observe the holy month in a peaceful environment. Singh said that while the government had directed the BSF and army to never fire the first bullet, “no one will ask them how they chose to retaliate”.
“If you (the BSF) are fired upon, then you have to decide what is the best course of reaction or action. You have done this with remarkable responsibility in the past,” the home minister said.
Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed a spurt in Pakistani shelling and firing along the International Border and the Line of Control this year, with more than 700 incidents leaving 39 people — 18 of them security personnel — dead.
Singh said India was a peace-loving nation and wanted cordial relations with all countries, including its neighbours.
The home minister also spoke about the government’s ambitious plan to completely seal its borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh using gadgets and ‘smart fences’. “In a few months, the work should get completed,” he said.
He said the BSF was the ”first wall of defence” on the borders and the troops had ensured that the Indian frontiers were safe under them.