Indo-Sino standoff: 'Addtional forces deployed at LAC'

Galwan Valley standoff: Addtional forces deployed at LAC, says President Ram Nath Kovind

Addressing a joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament, Kovind said the government was vigilant and fully committed to safeguard the interests of the country

A Border Security Force (BSF) personnel stands guard along the Srinagar-Leh National highway, in Ganderbal district of Central Kashmir, Wednesday, June 17, 2020. Representative image/Credit: PTI File Photo

President Ram Nath Kovind on Friday said the government has deployed additional security forces at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China where security forces had foiled attempts to change the status-quo.

Addressing a joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament, Kovind said the government was vigilant and fully committed to safeguard the interests of the country.

“Efforts were made to disrupt the peace at LAC in utter disregard of bilateral relations and agreements. However, our security forces not only responded to these machinations with promptitude, force and courage, but also foiled all attempts to change the status quo at the border,” the President said in his speech that was boycotted by 18 opposition parties.

He paid tributes to 20 soldiers who laid down their lives defending the country at Galwan Valley in June last year.

“Additional forces have also been deployed to protect India's sovereignty over the LAC,” the President said.

The hour-long address in the Central Hall of Parliament saw the President highlight the government's achievements in diverse sectors and the measures to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

He also noted the rapid decline in the number of new Covid-19 cases and the significant increase in the number of recoveries.

Kovind said the government has been pushing for achieving self-reliance in the defence sector and imports of more than 100 items linked to defence have been prohibited to promote 'Make in India.

“Only a few days back, the Government placed an order with HAL for procurement of 83 indigenous fighter aircraft ‘Tejas’ worth Rs 48,000 crore. Similarly, several advanced weapons including supersonic torpedoes, quick reaction missiles, tanks and indigenous rifles are being manufactured in India,” the President said.

He said India was also rapidly increasing its share in the exports of defence equipment.

Kovind also said after the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution, the people of Jammu and Kashmir have been empowered with new entitlements.

He said the number of incidents involving Naxal violence has declined and the Naxal-affected area was shrinking.

“The development-oriented policy of the central government has also received wholehearted support from the people of Jammu and Kashmir. Only a few weeks ago, the elections to district councils in Jammu and Kashmir were held successfully for the first time after Independence,” the President said.