Recently, while talking on a foreign channel, a question came up. The question was that India has increased its Defence budget substantially and whether because of this considerable fear has been created for Pakistan or considerable anxiety has been created in Pakistan. Pakistan’s concern is natural. India and Pakistan have been fighting a psychological war for the past 60 years. The easiest way to stay on top of power in Pakistan is by opposing India and taking Kashmir and stirring the emotions of the people. That Kashmiris will get freedom is not included in it. The inner feeling is that Kashmir should merge with Pakistan. On the other side, in India too, this is the infallible formula for getting close to power, obtaining power and for staying in power: opposition to Pakistan, abusing Pakistan and swearing to wipe out Pakistan. And in the middle of all this, if any small skirmish or clash happens at the border, then it becomes a matter of dignity and respect for our country.
When we tried to know from the Army what exactly happens at the border, then along with high Army officials the jawans (soldiers) also disclosed that over there we don’t have cinema or theatre or music or songs. We have only one means of entertainment and that is firing bullets. When Pakistani soldiers get bored with their solitude and stress, then they rain bullets on us and when we are in the same situation, then we rain bullets on them. Actually this is entertainment for both the sides. And sometimes they not only attack our people and injure them, but also kill them and sometimes in attacking them we kill them.
I firmly believe that neither Pakistan nor China should fear modernisation of the Indian Armed Forces and getting them prepared for technological war. The only proviso is that the disease of corruption which has made our Indian Armed Forces hollow, from that at least the Indian Army should now save itself, the Defence Minister should save himself, the Finance Minister should save himself and the Prime Minister should save himself. And all of them should together make India’s Army the best Army, in a class by itself and see if there are any people in the whole system inside the Army who are siding in any way with foreigners in increasing the corruption. This test, Mr. Prime Minister, is your test.
The Army does not take this as a sign or indication of war, they take it as minor clashes, but inside Pakistan and India these incidents are linked to nationalism. That is why when the foreign channel asked me that question, I said clearly that Pakistan should not worry about the increase in India’s Defence budget as the Indian Army has been fighting wars with conventional weapons. Those conventional weapons have now started changing to sophisticated weapons. On the other side the techniques of war are changing in the world. The technique of war has now has come to the fore in the form of a technological war. Now soldiers do not have to fight a face-to-face war. Sitting somewhere far away, computer controlled weapons have to be aimed at the right target, by which the enemy is harmed. I am not talking about atomic weapons, I am talking about general technological war.
After this the channel made me talk to some viewers. Those viewers said that when a terrorist goes to India, India trembles. I replied to him that you are talking about the same mindset to which there are people in our country who are that mindset’s victims and in your country as well. And that mindset has imprisoned us in its jail for the past 60 years. On one side of India is Pakistan, from where generally it is believed terrorists come. Conventional war and conventional weapons are sufficient to fight with those terrorists, technological weapons are not required for it. I told that viewer that on our other side is China with whom we have never had friendly relations.
We have had 3 wars with Pakistan, whereas with China there has been only 1 war, but the wounds of that 1 war are till today fresh in the hearts of Indians. A ‘Hindi-Cheeni bhai bhai’ (Indian-Chinese are brothers) slogan was raised. In India there is less sorrow about the fact that China occupied its land, but the sorrow is more that those whom we truly considered our brothers and raised the slogan of ‘Hindi-Cheeni bhai bhai’, they betrayed our trust. That is why looking at the military strength of China, taking in account the recent infiltrations made by it, we also have to increase our military strength, have to modernise our weapons and have to ready ourselves for technical warfare, which is called a technological war. China is a very strong nation in the matter of technology. China’s Air Force and Navy are much stronger than ours.
I also said to that Pakistan viewer that everybody wants that there should never be a war. And maybe now wars will not occur, because now everybody has different-different kinds of weapon, but inspite of this nobody denies the possibility that there can be war. Therefore it is not essential for India to increase its Defence budget keeping Pakistan in view. Pakistan is a small country. If we have a war with Pakistan then the result will be the same that came at the time of the 1965, 1971 and Kargil wars, but with China there is no option other than a technological war. The border of India that touches China does not come under a clear division anywhere. There is a line called the McMahon Line which nobody now accepts, and China wants to occupy more land than it has already occupied. China believes that India’s Arunachal Pradesh is totally a part of China and is not a part of India. And it considers this part like it considers its other provinces. If any person from Arunachal Pradesh wishes to go to China, he or she does not need to obtain a visa.
Actually the condition of our Defence forces is not very good. Some corruption on a small scale and some corruption on a large scale have made the country hollow. The battleships we purchased from Russia, even in those there was the smell of corruption, it was investigated, during which facts have emerged. The helicopters we purchased for the Air Force, bought fighter planes, questions were raised too about those deals and for the Army nothing came. I recall the 12 letters written by the former Chief of Army and current Minister of State for Development of the North Eastern Region (Independent Charge), and also MoS External Affairs and Overseas Indian Affairs, General V.K. Singh, to the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Out of those 12 letters, 3-4 letters were leaked to the press either by the Prime Ministers’ Office itself or by the Defence Ministry. But the news that came out and which was never rebutted was that if there is a war with China or Pakistan, then our country has ammunition that will last only for three days of warfare. I accept that situation will not arise now. That is why such a big budget was essential for the rejuvenation of India’s Armed Forces.
The Indian Armed Forces should be rejuvenated, they should get good training and the most important and biggest thing is that they should be got completely ready for technological war. And all these things cannot happen without money. I firmly believe that neither Pakistan nor China should fear modernisation of the Indian Forces and getting them prepared for technological war. The only proviso is that the disease of corruption which has made our Indian Armed Forces hollow, from that at least the Indian Army should now save itself, the Defence Minister should save himself, the Finance Minister should save himself and the Prime Minister should save himself. And all of them should together make India’s Army the best Army, in a class by itself and see if there are any people in the whole system inside the Army who are siding in any way with foreigners in increasing the corruption. This test, Mr. Prime Minister, is your test.