India’s Army Chief Gen. Dalbir Singh declared that, if needed, his country is ready to face hostile military action at its borders, comments that will likely increase tensions between India and Pakistan.
The army chief, speaking at the Tri-Service Seminar of the 1965 India-Pakistan War on Tuesday, accused Pakistan of employing “new methods to create unrest in Jammu and Kashmir,” adding that recent terrorist incidents are “clear pointers” that violence will spread to other areas, reports The Hindu.
“Referring to the frequent ceasefire violations along the borders in Jammu and Kashmir, which has put relations between India and Pakistan under a strain, the Army Chief said New Delhi is aware of the need to remain prepared,” adds The Hindu.
A couple of days prior to Gen. Singh’s comments, Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Pakistan’s defense minister, accused India of trying to “impose war on Pakistan.”
India will incur “heavy losses” if it attempts to wage war on Pakistan, warned the defense minister.
Gen. Singh indicated that “a very high level of operational preparedness at all times has become part of India’s strategy as there is recognition that the swift short nature of future wars is likely to offer limited warning time.”
His comments come at time when ongoing ceasefire violations are reportedly keeping India on high alert.
“As we look ahead we can see that our threats and challenges become more complex. As a result the commitments of the Indian Army have increased manifold in scope and intensity in past few years,” noted the army chief. “The frequent ceasefire violations and infiltration bids by our western neighbor always remain live and active.”
India and Pakistan have been engaged in a war of words with one another over recently-alleged ceasefire violations.
Moreover, tensions between the two countries have escalated following the recent Gurdaspur and Udhampur terror attacks earlier this year, which New Delhi has blamed on Pakistani nationals.
The first-ever planned national security-level negotiations between both sides were cancelled after Pakistan refused to back down from meeting with separatists in the disputed region of Kashmir, which is controlled by India.
After the cancellation, both countries have reportedly accused one another of violating the ceasefire pact that has led to civilian fatalities and casualties among defense troops.