Defence Minister Rajnath Singh performed 'Shastra Puja' or worship of weapons at Sukna War Memorial in West Bengal's Darjeeling on the occasion of Dussehra today. Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane was also present with Singh.
The defence minister will celebrate Dussehra with Army soldiers in a high-altitude border area in Sikkim sector of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), a decision in the midst of India's border row with China in eastern Ladakh.
Speaking to ANI, Rajnath said that India wants to put an end to the Indo-China border tensions and preserve peace. "Also, I am confident that our Army will not let anyone take even an inch of our land," Singh said in Darjeeling.
India and China are locked in a five-month-long bitter standoff in eastern Ladakh that has significantly strained their ties. Both sides held a series of diplomatic and military talks to resolve the row, however, no breakthrough has been acheived to end the standoff.
— ANI (@ANI) October 25, 2020
Last year, Rajnath had performed 'Shastra Puja' in the French port city of Bordeaux during Dussehra as he was on a bilateral visit to the country then. He has been performing 'Shastra Puja' during Dussehra for the last several years, including during his tenure as the Union Home Minister in the previous NDA government.
Earlier, this month, heralding in a new era in the connectivity of roads and bridges in sensitive areas close to Western, Northern and North Eastern Borders, Singh opened 44 major permanent bridges constructed by BRO.
He also laid the foundation stone for Nechiphu Tunnel in Arunachal Pradesh. These bridges are of strategic importance and provide connectivity to remote areas. The 44 bridges are spread over seven states and union territories.
Further, the government has also planned to build 10 tunnels running up more than 100 kilometres in Ladakh and Kashmir regions for smooth movement of the military throughout the year. The BRO has proposed eight tunnels to enhance connectivity to Ladakh and Kashmir linking roads to the Line of Control. A few tunnels would be at the 17,000 feet connecting forward locations.