Lt Gen M M Naravane (Image: PTI)
Eastern Army Commander Lt Gen M M Naravane on Tuesday said Pakistan can keep raising its "nuclear bogey", but India will not be scared of such threats. Naravane was reacting to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan's remarks on nuclear capabilities of the two neighbours in an address to the nation on Monday.
"They can keep raising the nuclear bogey, we are not scared of that," the Army vice-chief designate said during an interaction on 'Defending our Borders' at the Bharat Chamber of Commerce here. Tensions between India and Pakistan spiked after India abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution, evoking strong reactions from Pakistan.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during his meeting with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G7 Summit in France on Monday, had categorically rejected any scope for third party mediation between India and Pakistan on Kashmir.
Khan has said he will raise the Kasmir issue at every international forum, including the UN General Assembly.
"Will these big countries keep looking at their economic interests only? They should remember, both countries have nuclear weapons," Khan said in his address.
Speaking on revoking of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, Naravane said that Article 370 was removed as it outlived its utility. He said that Article 370 had a meaning at the time it was incorporated. "It was an enabling provision, it has outlived its utility and so has been removed," he said.
Naravane also said that it is not true that people of Jammu and Kashmir are not welcoming the change, and pointed out that 55 per cent of the now-bifurcated state constitutes Ladakh.
"... In the Kashmir part, there are only five districts responsible for all the mayhem (insurgency in the Valley over the years), so will only five districts hold the whole country to ransom?" he said. "We will deal with it as and when incidents occur, but I think they will also realise in the long run the law of diminishing returns... that if you want better and brighter future for yourself and your children, peace is the only way," Naravane said.