Reacting to the Chinese attempt at incursion along the Arunachal Pradesh border on December 9, Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane said that the neighbouring nation’s army had stooped to “hooliganism”.
He said the Indian Army has a “professional stance” in warfare and would rather open fire than resort to “wielding clubs”.
He was referring to the People’s Liberation Army exchanging blows with Indian soldiers in Galwan valley in 2020-21 and in Arunachal’s Tawang last week.
General Naravane said the PLA had stooped to using “clubs and barbed wires” like “prehistoric times”.
“We would still like to maintain that we are a 21st-century Army. To start going back to clubs and barbed wires is going back to prehistoric times. It is a very regressive way of going. We would still like to maintain that in warfare also there are certain rules. It is not that you do whatever you want to do. We would still like to maintain a professional stance. Therefore, rather than resort to wielding clubs, we rather open fire,” he said in an interview with news agency ANI.
“That is how an army fights by using the weapons at your disposal and not getting into fisticuffs. Are we hooligans or mafia? We are professional. Is that the level PLA has gone down to? Hooliganism and streetfighting? Or they are a professional 21st-century army? On one side they try to show their technological prowess, on the other side they are coming with barbed-wire clubs. It is ridiculous,” he said.
Referring to the 2020 Galwan Valley clash, General Naravane said that the Indian Army soldiers countered the PLA the same way that was used against them. Twnty Indian soldiers lost their lives in the Galwan valley clash in 2020. Several Chinese soldiers were also killed in the encounter. “They were carrying sticks and we were also carrying sticks,” he said.
“Any casualty of course hurts you. Every man is your man or son or daughter as a chief or a battalion commander. So, any such news comes, obviously you feel saddened. On the other hand, you also feel that what they have done is in the line of duty. They have certainly given as good as they got,” he told ANI.