Jammu : Calling the Army personnel as the ‘suraksha kawach’ of ‘Maa Bharti’, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that it is only because of them the countrymen sleep peacefully and happily enjoy every festival.
The Prime Minister was addressing the soldiers at Naushera in Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir where he arrived this morning to celebrate the festival of Diwali.
“Our soldiers are the ‘suraksha kawach’ of ‘Maa Bharti’ and it is because of you all, the people of our country can sleep peacefully and there is happiness during festivals,” said the Prime Minister.
“I haven’t come as a Prime Minister but as your family member,” he said. “I have the same feeling on arriving here, the way you all feel on meeting your families,” said the Prime Minister adding that he will take along new energy, zeal and trust.
“Every Indian will tonight lighten a ‘diya’ (earthen lamp) and extend Diwali greetings to all of you,” he said, wishing Army personnel on the occasion.
The jawans, who were filled with ‘josh’ amidst the presence of the Prime Minister, were enthusiastic about meeting him and chanted ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ slogan that echoed in the air.
Lauding the Naushera Brigade for its role during the surgical strike, the Prime Minister said that every Indian is filled with pride on the role of this brigade during the surgical strike.
He said that every year he spends Diwali with the soldiers guarding borders but this time, he has visited soldiers with the blessing from Indians citizens for them.
“After surgical strike, attempts were being made to disrupt peace and are still on but, our jawans have foiled all nefarious designs by giving a befitting reply every time,” said the Prime Minister.
Modi said that it is believed that Pandavas during their 14 years of ‘agyatwas’ (period of exile) had spend some time in this area, adding, “I am feeling connected with the energy today by being a part of celebrations with you (soldiers).”
He also said that it used to take years earlier to procure defence equipment but the commitment to self-reliance in the defence sector is the the only way to change old methods and added, “the improved connectivity in border areas has helped us enhance our deployment capability – be it from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh, Jaisalmer to Andaman and Nicobar Islands.”
He also highlighted the role of women in the Armed Forces stating that they are being given permanent commission now.
The Prime Minister also honoured and interacted with veterans and later paid tributes to soldiers who lost their lives in the line of duty.
Continuing the tradition of celebrating the festival of Diwali with jawans every year since 2014, the Prime Minister on Thursday arrived at Naushera sector of Rajouri district to celebrate the ‘Festival of Lights’ with troops and uplift the ‘josh’.
The Prime Minister this morning reached Jammu technical airport from where he left for Naushera.
The Prime Minister also distributed sweets and fruits among the soldiers.
He also took a review of the security situation during a briefing by the top Army Commanders.
Chief of Army Staff General M M Naravane reached Rajouri on Wednesday and reviewed the security situation along the Line of Control.
Earlier in 2019 also, the Prime Minister celebrated Diwali with jawans in Rajouri.
Notably, the counter insurgency operation in Bhatadurian forested area of Mendhar in Poonch has entered the 25th day on Thursday in which nine Army personnel have so far lost their lives.