Mankind and the world have travelled a long and tedious path to achieve what we enjoy today as various amenities in modern-day life. While travelling this path, nations and mankind have since time immemorial witnessed immense struggle and destruction. Apart from wiping out of civilisations due to natural calamities, world history is full of incidents where nations have waged war over other nations and people have suffered immeasurably. A pragmatic and comprehensive opinion can definitely be formed about the overall reasons behind such undesired happenings such as craving to expand territorially, gain more power, more wealth or more resources and may be even getting unquestioned subjugation of individuals or community of people. Mankind understood the futility of all these actions influenced by desires and took a wise decision by coming together to form the United Nations and ratified an idealistic charter with a new hope to see a peaceful and harmonious world community post World War II.
We are witnessing a change again and it is important that we understand the nature of this change and respect it, rather than keep denying it. Earlier, great players in sports dominated for longer periods and similarly in the fields of other professional activities such as movies and corporate, but now the times are changing and the period of domination is shorter and in most cases shared between more numbers of such professionals. Era of kings was denounced and so, we thought, was the era of dictatorship. World was supposed to turn more humane and considerate and if we analyse holistically it has. We can give numerous examples how the world has changed for better since the WWII in form of various nations growing economically providing succour to their populations, increased trade between nations thereby ensuring availability of all worldly goods at all places in the world and also research and provisioning of medicines for longevity and addressing health issues worldwide. The list goes on however, what we failed to undertake is taking adequate steps to guard against any such catastrophic occurrences of the past by timely and appropriately modernising the world organisation and providing it more teeth. The core issues need to be resolved first before we embark on a journey to world peace and that is where we are failing. Basic tenets of any relationship are trust and honesty. Display of these tenets by various nations is a must for long lasting reliable friendship and cooperation.
Challenge of Covid-19 is a biological emergency that humankind is facing now. We have overcome greater conflicts and destruction in the past and we should be assured that we would also overcome this one while ending up more resilient and strong for any such eventuality in future. More pertinent concern at this juncture would be to zero on to the causes of the same. This emergency is just one way the overall threat to mankind has manifested. There could have been many other ways however; the main threat is that we are not able to cope up with the challenging and changing times morally and ethically. This is more serious and in case we fail, then more and more such situations would be confronted by mankind in future with devastating results. As individuals we have adjusted to the change and are more considerate of views of partners and children. Families have become more understanding to the demands of all members and so is the requirement of all nations to be obliging and cooperative towards the needs of various other counterparts in the world.
Nations, same as individuals, are bound to have ambitions or the potential for growth would be suppressed. This somehow cannot be overarching on other nation’s interests. This basic prerequisite must be understood before any individual, family or nation sets a target to be achieved. Fair competition is a precondition prior to embarking on competition. The saying that all is fair in love and war has lost its relevance in the modern world as there is supposed to be no place for war. If we give place to war for resolving our differences then we do not deserve to be called a growing society and modern world. We would be failing in our responsibilities to our coming generations in case we give them a world which , rather than travelling towards a more prosperous future, has been pushed and relegated to the thoughts of the past. World cannot afford to have a war whether kinetic or cold and accordingly all the intentions of leaders of nations of the world should be to take adequate steps to ensure that there is no war.
Utopian or idealistic world is achievable and humankind must keep striving for it. The theory of realism and functioning in shades of grey must be discouraged worldwide. Evil in all forms must be destroyed and purity must be given ascendancy. While it is understandable why these things came into play during the course of our history but in the modern world, wherein we have achieved so much during the course of development these evil thoughts and behaviour have no place. Systems must function and laws must be upheld without bias or prejudice uniformly. Values, ethics and morality must be given priority over achievements, showoff and dominance. World must start celebrating ethical and moral behavior by nations and ethical nations must never be dominated and allowed to be perished or subjugated. Emphasis should be given to Giving rather than Getting. This is the only way forward for a prosperous humanity and a peaceful world as propagated in the preamble of the United Nations Charter.
When a nation bases its plan for growth on its own understanding of historical happenings then it must not infringe into territorial integrity of another nation. If in history some territory was with someone then during other periods it was not. We must have a start point for all assumptions of territorial demarcations and that should be, when the world order changed after WWII and the United Nations was formed with adoption of the UN Charter by most countries of the world. Nations signing that charter cannot claim that the basic premise of the country at that time was incorrect. If China has different perceptions of territorial demarcation of nations of the world then so do others but that cannot be termed as morally right or ethically correct? Also an effort to subvert other countries basic territorial integrity must be contested by all nations’ signatories of UN Charter unequivocally. Nations and leaders of the nations must respect other counterparts and should not violate other nation’s sovereignty or integrity quoting their own national interests.
Great Chinese civilisation with rich history and heritage is showing signs of being chained in its own archival thoughts and selfish intentions. Expansionist plans of China implemented by their previous rulers and now by the Xi Jinping regime is virtually challenging the status quo of the world which existed after WWII. Imagine if Europeans and British harvest such plans and start putting it in place, even China would be colonised again. It is naïve to believe that by mere military occupation people can be subjugated in modern era that denounces inhumanity and slavery. Forcible religious conversions are also detested uniformly throughout the world. It is quite perplexing that the most populous country and the second largest economy of the world would embark on fulfilment of a mission that is full of contradictions in the modern world. Too many rules and laws of the modern world have already been violated with impunity such as humanitarian, territorial and in the oceans. Morally and ethically China has failed to live up to the standards desired of P5 nations. Not only that, today they have unholy alliances with damaging plans of religious subversion and territorial gains as if the evil is contemplating to once again destroy humanity. World has to find a way to deal with this complex situation non militarily to ensure no one in future harvests such ambitions which encroaches on someone else’s rights and privileges. World community and the United Nations have to make such belligerent nations understand that territorial claims based on selfish intentions and misconstrued history have no place in the modern, civilised world.
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BRO restores connectivity to 13 border villages of Uttarakhand
New Delhi: A 200-feet Bailey Bridge, built by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in Reini Village on Joshimat-Malari road across the Rishiganga River was thrown open for public on 3 March. With this, BRO has restored connectivity, in a record time of 26 days, to the 13 border villages of Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district that were cut off due flash floods on 7 February earlier this year.
DG BRO Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhry lauded the efforts of the personnel of 21 Border Roads Task Force (BRTF) of Project Shivalik and the Chief Engineer Project, Shivalik and his team of Karma Yogis who worked round-the-clock to achieve this feat. He said that BRO has named that bridge as ‘The Bridge of Compassion’ as a tribute to the fallen karmayogis of Renie Power Plant & NTPC Power Plant. He thanked the state government for providing support and assistance to BRO in completing this difficult task.
On 7 February, the Glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF) in Rishiganga River had washed away a 90-metre RCC Bridge near Reini Village on Joshimat-Malari road. The bridge was the only link to Niti Border in Chamoli district. The GLOF had also washed away a hydro-electric plant located at the same site. More than 200 workers of the hydro-electric plant were trapped.
The BRO swung into action by deploying 20 small teams consisting of 200 personnel of 21 BRTF under Project Shivalik in the affected area for relief and rehabilitation work. More than 100 vehicles/equipment and plants that included 15 Heavy Earth Moving equipment/machinery like Hydraulic Excavators, Dozers, JCBs and Wheel Loaders etc were pressed into service. BRO also inducted critical equipment with the help of Indian Air Force.
The task was very challenging due to the steep cliff on far bank and 25-30 metres debris/muck on the home bank and non-availability of working space on either side.
Army inaugurates community radio station in North Kashmir
New Delhi: The first of its kind in North Kashmir, Community Radio Station with the tagline “Radio Chinar 90.4, Har Dil Ki Dhadkan” was inaugurated by the Indian Army for the Awam in Mazbug, Sopore.
The Radio Station was inaugurated by Lt Gen B.S. Raju, General Officer Commanding Chinar Corps in presence of Maj Gen HS Sahi, General Officer Commanding Kilo Force & various Army and civil dignitaries. The reach of the Community Radio Station will be Sopore, Bandipora and Baramulla districts.
This Community Radio Station has been started with an aim to revitalise the connect within different segments of the community. This will provide a good platform for a community dialogue, sharing of information, art & culture. It will build a community environment, which is better connected with issues which are local and important to the community.
This Community Radio Station will be highlighting & showcasing the hidden talent of North Kashmir, especially local entrepreneurs, musicians, sportsman and artists to the Awam of Kashmir and the rest of the world.
The Community Radio Station is being run by local Radio Jockeys from North Kashmir who have themselves come forward to contribute in this noble cause. It also provides a platform for people of all age groups to share their experiences & also to spread awareness about drug abuse and other social causes. The Community Radio Station will also be available on social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Internet Radio so as to provide uninterrupted service to a wider audience.
During the inauguration ceremony, Lt Gen B.S. Raju, General Officer Commanding Chinar Corps, dedicated the Community Radio Station, Sopore, to the peace and development of Kashmir.
DRDO CONDUCTS SUCCESSFUL FLIGHT TEST OF SOLID FUEL DUCTED RAMJET
New Delhi: Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully carried out a flight demonstration based on Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR) technology from Integrated Test Range Chandipur off the coast of Odisha at around 1030 hrs on Friday. All the subsystems, including the booster motor and nozzle-less motor, performed as expected. During the test, many new technologies were proven, including Solid Fuel based Ducted Ramjet technology.
Successful demonstration of Solid Fuel based Ducted Ramjet technology has provided DRDO with a technological advantage which will enable it to develop long range air-to-air missiles. At present, such technology is available only with a handful of countries in the world. During the test, air launch scenario was simulated using a booster motor. Subsequently, the nozzle-less booster accelerated it to the required Mach number for Ramjet operation.
The performance of the missile was monitored using the data captured by Electro Optical, Radar and Telemetry instruments deployed by ITR and confirmed successful demonstration of the mission objectives. The launch was monitored by senior scientists of various DRDO labs, including Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL), Research Centre Imarat (RCI) and High Energy Materials Research Laboratory (HEMRL).
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated the scientists of DRDO, Indian Air Force and the Industry on the successful flight test of SFDR.Secretary Department of Defence R&D and Chairman DRDO Dr G. Satheesh Reddy also congratulated the team involved in the successful flight test.
THE PROBLEM OF A PERENNIALLY PERTURBED PAKISTAN
Time has come for Pakistan to sincerely try to look beyond its understandable paranoia, quit meaningless sabre-rattling, and come to the high-table with India.
NEW DELHI: Pakistani Foreign Minister, Shah Mehmood Qureshi recently expressed concern over what he construed as India’s adoption of “belligerent and aggressive policies” manifesting as “acquisition of advanced naval weapons technology from Western partners”. According to him, these developments will raise the chances of conflict in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).Even an undergraduate student of Geopolitics will hold that the Pakistani Minister’s concerns are not only misinformed, but grossly exaggerated.
It is true that Indian influence in the Indian Ocean Region has grown from strength to strength over the last few decades, both quantitatively, and in terms of the matrix of capabilities it has built for itself. This is attributable to induction of newer, more complex platforms, as well as widening of range of operations and partners in the IOR. However, a key tenet underpinning India’s growth story in the IOR is that India happens to be a responsible democracy, and its vision of itself, and of its neighbours is driven by what Indian PM Narendra Modi articulated in March, 2015 as SAGAR or Security and Growth for all in the Region.
As part of SAGAR, India has continually assisted countries in the IOR with missions such as Exclusive Economic Zone surveillance, Search and Rescue, Hydrographic survey assistance, and other collaborative activities aimed at capability enhancement and capacity building of partner nations thereby enhancing interoperability and synergy. Recent high-level visits by External Affairs Minister Dr S. Jaishankar to Seychelles and UAE, and Gen M.M. Naravane, the Indian Army Chief’s visit to Saudi Arabia and UAE, as well as greater thrust on initiatives such as BIMSTEC, and ASEAN are part of the larger Indian engagement in the region. Likewise, over the last few years, the Indian Navy has also firmly established itself as the Preferred Security Partner in the region, and has undertaken three Covid-related outreach Missions in 2020 to provide food and medical aid; SAGAR-I to five IOR nations, SAGAR-II to four East African nations and SAGAR-III to three South-East Asian nations. More such missions are sure to follow.
Recently, India also embarked on the ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative, which means ‘Vaccine friendship’ entailing supply of its indigenously designed and manufactured Covid-19 vaccines to partner countries. The initiative started with countries in India’s immediate neighbourhood—key partner nations in the Indian Ocean—and the outreach very soon extended to countries in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.
Through its Navy, India today participates in 17 bilateral and 8 multilateral exercises with partner nations. The Indian Ocean Naval Symposium or IONS, an Indian initiative started in 2008, is an open and inclusive forum of more than 30 IOR navies today. In fact, the India hosted the IONS Working Group meeting on Information Sharing and Interoperatability from 17-18 Feb 21 at New Delhi, which was attended by 9 partner countries, including Pakistan.
In this regard, Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, had stated on the eve of Navy Day (04 Dec) last year that “we are ready to work with like-minded nations in the region”, and that “India is playing a stabilising role in the Indo-Pacific region”. In another context, India’s commitment to peace and stability in the region and commitment to rule-based order—both at land and at sea, as well as preservation of its own interest, have adequately been reflected in the manner in which the prolonged India-China face-off has been maturely diffused and deescalated. Given these on-ground facts, it becomes quite evident that the Pakistani Foreign Ministers’ and the Pakistani government’s concerns are not only ill-founded, but also lacking in any credible logic. Perhaps, something more than general paranoia assails the Pakistani Minister’s remarks.
Pakistan recently concluded its biennial maritime exercise, Aman-21. It would be significant to bring out that even though 40+ countries participated in it, experts from various quarters have cast doubts on the ethical foundation of the Exercise itself, given Pakistan’s longstanding baggage as a prime financier, breeder and exporter of terror in the region.
It would merit attention that compared to India, Pakistan neither has the muscular hardware to position itself as a Blue Water force, nor does it have deep-rooted friendships, such as the recently forged and continually strengthening Quadrilateral Security Dialogue between India, US, Japan and Australia. Also, while Pakistan conducts one odd feel-good exercise in two-years, India’s engagements with other IOR countries is a round-the-clock affair encompassing Fleet Reviews, Security and Joint Exercises, Transfer of hardware and training, High-level visits, and dialogues on a routine basis, all aimed at promoting inclusivity and stability in the region.
In light of these facts, Pakistan’s one-point agenda, perennial paranoia, and its insecurities, arising from its awareness of these disheartening capability asymmetries, are understandable. However, Pakistan must sincerely try to look beyond its understandable paranoia, quit meaningless sabre-rattling, and come to the high-table, firmly believing that while aggression maybe the first reply of the weak, restraint is always the first resort of the strong.
Assam Regimental Centre conducts attestation parade in Shillong
The Assam Regimental Centre held attestation parade of 331 batch in Meghalaya’s Shillong. 225 Recruits have now been attested in a scintillating ceremony conducted at Parson Parade Ground. The parade was reviewed by Major General P.S. Behl, Colonel of “The Assam Regt and Arunachal Scouts”. The ceremony was conducted with Covid-19 protocols.
The ceremonial attestation parade marks the completion of the training schedule for recruits in The Assam Regimental Centre. These young soldiers will be joining Assam Regiment Units at various locations.
Major General P.S. Behl, the Chief Guest and reviewing officer of attestation parade extolled the virtues of selfless service to the nation and recounted the contributions of the North East and Assam Regiment towards nation building. Complimenting the passing out batch for their immaculate standards, he exhorted the warriors from the North East to persevere in pursuit of excellence.
The reviewing officer also complemented the staff for having conducted the training following Covid protocols and using innovative methods which will help the young soldiers in serving the motherland in efficient manner. Swaying to the tilting tune of the Regimental song, the young soldiers erupted in joyous to mark on a successful transition from enthusiastic recruits to valiant soldiers.
Passing out parade of 58 Gorkha Training Centre
The passing out parade of Recruits of 58 Gorkha Training Centre was held at Happy Valley, Shillong. The passing out parade marks the culmination of rigorous Recruit training and completes the transformation of a determined recruit into a young soldier of the Indian Army.
In an impressive ceremony marked by immaculate turnout and precision marching, a total of 248 Recruits took ‘Oath of Affirmation’. These young soldiers will now be dispatched to the numerous locations of Indian Army, always dedicated to protect our Motherland whenever the need arises.
The parade was reviewed by Brigadier M Narendranath Sajan, Commandant 58 Gorkha Training Centre wherein he exhorted the Young Soldiers to strive to be the finest of Indian Army and congratulated them on this important juncture of their life. During his address, the Commandant stressed upon the importance of valour, honour, ethos & fine traditions of Indian Army.
He also complemented the staff for having conducted the training following Covid protocols and using innovative methods which will help the Young Soldiers in serving the Country in more efficient manner. In the presentation ceremony Recruit Abhishek Sakia was awarded the Overall Best Recruit & Recruit of 8 GR and Recruit Manish Ale Magar was awarded Best Recruit of 5 GR (FF).
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