Tensions remain along the Line of Actual Control in the Eastern Ladakh. The Chinese military has not retreated from the LAC even after multiple discussion at various levels. Hence, the Indian Army is also preparing to give a befitting reply when required. In this context, discussions have been going on about giving free hand to the army. Talking to News18 India, Union Minister, General V.K. Singh said that free hand implies how the government supports the army. According to him, “The army takes its action in the way it deems fit. They have complete control over it – after this if the government says that you take action, if there is a slip-up, we will handle it – it is called giving a free hand.”
In this case, he also spoke about the difference between the Congress and the BJP government. Recalling the 2012 Army Day celebrations, he said that the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was going to visit Myanmar just after V.K. Singh had come back from there. “We had to give the some material to build a road there. I told the Prime Minister that if you had given this work to the army, we would have given it to them in 15 days, but it has not been reached in three years. They used to call us ‘No Action, Only Talk’. Then Manmohan Singh ji had said that General Sahab you know there are many procedures and we have to follow those. On the other hand, if there is something that hurts the image or citizens of India, then today’s Prime Minister (Modi ji) does not speak but the action is taken and the work gets done.”
Talking about 1962, he said that at that time our leadership was very weak. “The greatest leader of the time (Jawaharlal Nehru), wanted to establish his image as a peace envoy and hence, so many things were weakened. India’s borders were never with China, they were with Tibet. We did nothing when China arrived in Tibet in the 50s. After that, Nehru became so eager for the Panchsheel pact, he did not listen to anyone.”
He further said that India of 2020 is not the India of 1962. According to him, India is capable in its own way, the leadership is strong and capable of recognizing what action should be taken when.