Pakistan on 1 January condemned the comments of the new Chief of Army Staff, General Manoj Mukund Naravane, regarding the ceasefire violations by Pakistan and the Indian Army’s preparedness to meet any threats.
A press release by the Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the comments “irresponsible” and stated that “there should be no doubt about Pakistan’s resolve and readiness to thwart any aggressive Indian move, inside its territory or AJ&K.”
“No one should forget Pakistan’s befitting response to India’s Balakot misadventure.”
Hours after taking over as the new Chief of Army Staff, General Naravane, speaking to news agency ANI on Tuesday, 31 December 2019, said that Pakistan's proxy war will not last long.
"As far as our neighbour is concerned, they are trying to use terrorism as a tool of state policy... as a way of carrying out a proxy war against us while maintaining deniability. However, this state can't last long, as they say you can't fool all the people, all the time," he said.
Commenting upon ceasefire violations by Pakistan, he said the army is aware of terrorists "waiting to cross over" and is "fully prepared to meet the threat".
General Naravane termed the abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir as "a step forward towards bringing peace and prosperity to the region"
"Post the abrogation of Article 370m there has been definite improvement in the situation on the ground. Incidents of violence have seen a marked decline... this augurs very well for the population of Jammu & Kashmir," he said.
On being asked about the frequent skirmishes along the Indo-China border, the new army chief attributed them to "difference in perception of where the LAC lies".
He, however, expressed confidence that peace and tranquility will prevail along the border as a result of the guidelines mandated following the Wuhan summit.
On the Post of CDS
Reacting to the creation of the new post of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Naravane called it the "need of the hour" and asserted that it will bring about greater interaction and synergy between three forces.
"It hasn't happened overnight. The proposal to create such a post has been in the pipeline for more than two decades," he also said.
Earlier in the day, Naravane took over as the 28th army chief, helming the 1.3 million-strong force at a time India faces evolving security challenges such as cross-border terrorism and an assertive Chinese military along the border.
General Naravane, who was serving as vice-chief of the army, succeeds Gen Bipin Rawat, appointed the country's first Chief of Defence Staff, a post created to bring in operational convergence among the three services.