Army chief General Bipin Rawat on Saturday accused Pakistan of “resorting to misadventure” repeatedly through its proxies and sponsoring terrorism against India and warned of hitting back with a “very punitive response” for every such attempt.
Speaking at an event to mark the completion of 20 years of Kargil war, he said, “Historically burdened by its own inadequacies, internal security and governance issues, Pakistan army time and again resorts to misadventure, either through flawed proxy wars and state-sponsored terror or intrusions in our country,” he said at an event to mark the completion of 20 years of Kargil war. “Indian armed forces stand resolute and ready to defend our territorial integrity. Let there be no doubt that any misadventure will be repelled with a very punitive response,” Rawat said.
Talking about the changing nature of wars, he said that non-state actors have gained prominence in some countries. “The rise of non-state actors and readiness to use terror and other irregular methods of fighting has become the new norms,” he said.
General Rawat said India’s response after the 2017 Uri terror attack and Balakot air strike demonstrated the country’s political and military will to respond to terror.
“We are working in a coordinated manner for a cogent and synchronized national response against sub-conventional and asymmetric threats by any adversary. Surgical strikes post-Uri and Balakot have amply demonstrated our political and military resolve against terror. Any act of terror will not go unpunished,” he stated.
He also said that cyber and space areas have emerged as new battlefields and the country needs to prepare itself to tackle the new challenges.
“Battlefield will be severely contested and seamlessly connected. In future, even conventional conflicts are likely to have a large asymmetric component leading to now what is being termed ‘hybrid war’. Technology has become a key driver of future wars,” he said.
Underlining the threat posed by who he called “ideological driven radicalised proxies”, Rawat emphasised on the need to “reorient and optimize capacities to effectively counter both military and non-military facets of asymmetric and unconventional wars emerging from within and outside the country.”
“Ideological driven radicalized proxies having footprints across nations are likely to enhance the operating space,” he said.
The Army chief also underlined that dissemination of information and control over shaping narratives would be emerging as one of the key domain in future warfare.
He informed the gathering that India has been remembering the fallen soldiers in the Kargil war from July 5 to July 27.