Modi at Kargil for Diwali
Prime Minister Narendra Modi reaches Kargil to celebrate Diwali with soldiers | Pic: Twitter/PMO India

War a last resort but peace not possible without strength: PM Modi

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India has always seen war as the last resort, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday as he interacted with soldiers in Kargil.

Like every year, PM Modi is celebrating Diwali with security personnel. In Kargil, the 1999 war, “external and internal enemies for the country” and increasing self-reliance in the defence sector were some of the aspects that he focused on during his speech.

“Whether it was the battle of Kurukshetra or Lanka, war was always the last report… attempts were made to delay escalation,” Modi said, referring to Mahabharata and Ramayana. “We are proponents of world peace. We oppose conflict but peace is not possible without strength. Our forces have capability and strategy. The army knows how to give a befitting reply to those seeking to create tensions,” he stressed.

‘Diwali ends atank’

“The meaning of Diwali is end of atank (terror) and Kargil made it possible,” he said while addressing the soldiers. “In Kargil, our forces crushed terror. I was fortunate enough to be a witness. I was shown my old photos here, and I am grateful for that,” he added. PM Modi was speaking in reference to the 1999 Kargil war against Pakistan.

Also watch: PM Modi kicks off Deepotsav festivities in Ayodhya on Diwali eve

During his address to soldiers in Kargil, Modi said, “For me, all of you have been my family for years now. Sweetness and brightness of my Diwali is amid you. It is a privilege to celebrate Diwali amid all of you.”

He lauded the soldiers posted at Kargil reminding them that the post has remained a banner of victory. “There has not been a single war with Pakistan where Kargil has not hoisted the flag of victory,” Modi said.

‘Rising prestige of India’

PM Modi said India’s prestige has risen globally as it is successfully dealing with enemies outside and inside.

“During the Ukraine war, we saw how our national flag became a shield for our citizens stranded there. India’s respect has increased across the world. It’s happening because India is standing successfully against its internal & external enemies,” PM Modi said in his Kargil address.

“Just like all of you are protecting us at the borders, we’re working within the country to fight evils like terrorism, ‘naxalwaad’, corruption. ‘Naxalwaad’ had taken a huge part of the nation in its grasp, but today that stretch is rapidly decreasing,” the prime minister said.

“When India’s strength rises, it also gives rise to the possibility of global peace and prosperity,” he added.

‘Indigenous defence manufacturing’

Modi also lauded India’s indigenous manufacturing capabilities listing all the weapons and artillery that the nation now produces. “Aatmanirbhar Bharat is most important to the nation’s security. Our dependence should be minimal on foreign weapons and systems,” he said.

“To facilitate the soldiers of this country in realising their responsibilities, we are developing hi-tech infrastructure in the border areas with seamless connectivity,” Modi said.

Also read: Modi inspects construction of Ram Temple at Ayodhya, takes part in Deepotsav

His visit to Kargil comes a day after he was in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, for the Deepotsav celebrations where the temple town witnessed a new world record of 15 lakh diyas being lit on the banks of Saryu river. He also offered prayers to Ram Lalla (infant Ram) at the Janmabhoomi complex, and reviewed the progress of construction of Ram Temple.

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