Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday said the country is facing challenges on its borders and can defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The statement by the defence minister comes just before talks with China, to resolve border issues. Speaking at a webinar celebrating the jubilee to mark 60 years of the National Defence College in Delhi, Rajnath Singh said, "India may be a peace-loving country which peace can only be ensured through the power to discourage war."
The webinar theme was on 'India's National Security - the last decade Ahead' and it started with a keynote speech by Rajnath Singh.The Minister said: "We believe that differences shouldn't become disputes. We attach importance to the peaceful resolution ofdifferences through dialogue. India is decided to guard its sovereignty and territorial integrity within the face of unilateralism and aggression, regardless of what the sacrifice."
India and China are engaged during a border dispute for the last seven months in Eastern Ladakh. Despite several rounds of talks between the 2 countries, the dispute remains unresolved.Talking about India's relations with friendly counties he said: "We have enhanced the scope and quality of our relationships with Saudi Arabia , UAE and Oman within the West and with Indonesia, Vietnam and South Korea within the East."He also mentioned that it had been Prime Minister Narendra Modi's interest in reaching bent partner countries in West Asia, South East and East Asia.
Talking about India's ally Russia, Singh said: "India also features a strong, traditional and deep-rooted relations with Russia. Our two countries have weathered many an challenge within the past through our close understanding and appreciation of every other's concerns and interests."He said working with like-minded countries, India has achieved substantial success to not only expose Pakistan's regressive policies but also make it's increasingly difficult to continue with its previous business as was common approach.
"With the exception of Pakistan, given its agenda of fuelling terrorism, India has improved its relations with all neighbours. we've invested heavily to assist and support our friends to forge a relationship of mutual-respect and mutual-interest," he added.From now on more officers from neighbouring counties are going to be trained at India's prestigious strategic leadership institution the National Defence College (NDC) as New Delhi increases its engagement with neighbours to the counter growing influence of China.