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‘Modi’s defence policy directionless, compromising national security’ - CONGRESS

The Congress on Thursday alleged that the Narendra Modi government’s “directionless policies” on defence and external affairs are harming India’s strategic interests and compromising national security.

Citing reports that China has built a 1.3-km-long road in Arunachal Pradesh, the party urged the Centre to be proactive about such transgressions.

Talking to reporters here, on Thursday, party spokesperson Tom Vadakkan said China’s move has raised serious concerns.


‘False bravado’ ::

“False bravado, chest thumping and TV studio warfare are the tools employed by the Modi government to manage the headlines when it comes to critical issues of national security. But the reality and actuality of their tall claims are getting unravelled day by day,” he said.

He alleged that the Centre, time and again, has displayed an incautious attitude to issues of national security.

He claimed that there were 415 transgressions by Chinese soldiers into the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in 2017, against 271 in 2016.

Citing a report that the Centre had scrapped a project to build 12 advanced minesweepers at the Goa shipyard, the Navy is likely to face a capability gap in detecting and countering naval mines, said Vadakkan. “Chinese nuclear and conventional submarines are regularly making forays into Indian Ocean.

“Strategic experts have continuously pointed out the ‘String of Pearls’ which China is attempting in the Indian Ocean by leveraging its influence on India’s neighbours like Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh etc. by building strategic bases at Hambantota in Sri Lanka and Chittagong port in Bangladesh besides extensive maritime facilities in Maldives,” he added.


Submarine damage ::

On the report that India’s nuclear submarine INS Arihant has suffered major damage due to “human error” he demanded a clarification from Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

“Shockingly, the absence of Arihant from operations came to the Centre’s attention during the India-China military stand-off at Doklam. For four months, the Centre’s leadership was said to be unaware that INS Arihant was lying indisposed,” he added.


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