India will catch up with China in developing border infrastructure in three to four years, chief of defence staff General Bipin Rawat said on Friday. He discounted major threats from the Chinese navy in the Indian Ocean region.
The country’s senior-most military officer said the “Quad” comprising India, US, Japan and Australia must not be seen from a military perspective or as a grouping against China.
“The nations have come together to ensure no single nation is able to dominate the region,” he said. On Pakistan, against the backdrop of the fresh ceasefire, Rawat said it was “too premature” to say whether India’s western neighbour will give up its policy of proxy war or cross-border terrorism.
Rawat said he would “give more credit” to the concerted and coordinated action by the Army, police forces and intelligence agencies in reducing terrorist incidents in J&K. At the same time, “some wisdom” also seems to have dawned on Pakistan, which is keen to get off the Financial Action Task Force’s “grey list”, he added.
Stressing the need for the Army, IAF and Navy to integrate capabilities through joint commands and adapt to new technologies, Rawat said, “It’s time for the Indian armed forces to transform, reform and perform.” He also pushed for the private sector to play a greater role in military R&D and defence production, which will also provide competition to DRDO and defence PSUs.