New Delhi: Defence Minister AK Antony, Tuesday, assured the nation that India is “fully prepared” in the event of a war.
Antony said the Indian armed forces are prepared for any challenge. He also dismissed reports on lack of ammunition as rumours.
"These are all rumours that ammunition only for four days is left in the stock. India is well prepared," Antony told reporters on the sidelines of an Indian Air Force (IAF) function here.
Denying gaps in the preparedness of the armed forces, the Defence Minister said, "I can assure that India is fully prepared. On the whole, the Indian armed forces are better prepared to face challenges."
The defence minister’s assertion came a day after the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence, in an extraordinary step, decided to call the three service chiefs to give an account of the state of preparedness of the forces against the backdrop of Army Chief Gen VK Singh speaking of shortages and deficiencies.
The decision to call the Chiefs of Army, Air and Navy before it on April 20 was part of an exercise to understand the issue of defence preparedness as the panel was examining the budgetary proposals of the Defence Ministry for 2012-13, sources said.
Antony himself had been vocal about government’s renewed emphasis on defence procurement. He asked the Army to streamline its purchase process in a manner that accountability can be fixed in the event of slippages.
Antony also asked officials of the defence ministry and the Army to examine the possibility of compressing the time taken for technical evaluations and trials.
The Army Chief had kicked up a huge row by disclosing that a bribe offer was made to him by a retired officer. The situation turned critical after the leak of a secret letter from him to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on gaps in defence preparedness.