Pune: The Army chief on Friday asked his
officers to be mentally prepared to step into the fight
against Naxals if the situation did not improve.
"It might be in six months or in one year or two years
but if we have to maintain our relevance as a tool of the
state we will have to undertake things that the nation wants
us to," a defence release quoted General V K Singh as saying.
He was addressing army officers during his visit to
the Southern Command headquarters here.
On the current security environment, he said there was
no let up in the proxy war situation with the western
neighbours and their activities, including operation of
sleeper cells in Jammu and Kashmir.
On China, Singh said though talks are on with that
country, it continues its heavy spend on modernising armed
"With our unsettled border, transgressions taking
place in disputed border areas cannot be ruled out," he said.
Commenting on a variety of institutional and
behavioural issues in the Army, he said the officer shortages
are here to stay as less people are joining in the direct
entry and short service schemes. "Everyone has to learn to
live with the shortages for the time being."
Singh suggested that JCOs/NCOs should be trained to
take on more responsibilities. He also advised the Commanding
Officers to make an effort to motivate more people to join the
army as officers.
Appealing to everyone to uphold the name of the army
as a family through their conduct, he said when incidents take
place it is not the individual who is remembered but the
institution or establishment whose reputation is spoiled.
Placing faith in the current assessment system, Singh
said it is fair and transparent. "By and large the system will
give you your due if you work hard and with commitment".
Asking the officers to be true in their reporting, the
General told them to avoid padding up things as that delays
the true situation from reaching the higher levels. Misuse of
manpower, especially in peace areas, must be stopped.
Commenting on the inter-personal relations, the army
chief said "do not stratify the hierarchy and take steps to
bridge the gap between the senior and junior officers".
Citing from an example of his visit to Bangladesh, he
appealed to senior officers to cut down on unnecessary show
during exercises or events and concentrate on military
efficiency except when showcasing the army to civilians.