China is working to install a radar system in Dondra Bay in Sri Lanka.

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Rajnath Singh, the minister of defense, informs Prime Minister Modi of the danger that China’s Dondra Bay radar plan poses to India’s strategic assets.

In addition to trying to assess India’s strategic assets in South India, the radar facility will primarily watch the actions of the Indian Navy, according to the PGurus website.

Using a top-secret 12-page assessment from Indian Navy intelligence, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh informed Prime Minister Narendra Modi that China was considering establishing a radar facility in Dondra Bay, a 45-acre open space where it could spy, from Sri Lanka. China and the Sri Lankan government are in negotiations to lease Dondra Bay for 99 years. This resembles Hambantota Port’s in certain ways. You may remember that this reporter broke the story in 2022 about compromised riches at the ports of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. Indian Naval intelligence has closely watched a visit by a PLA spy ship last year that had negative repercussions for India’s regional interests.

Dondra Bay will be the location of China’s overly potent espionage radars. In addition to the strategic assets in the southern region of the nation, such as the Kudankulam and Kalpakkalam nuclear power plants, this will assist China in keeping an eye on India’s presence in the Indian Ocean region and the actions of the Indian Navy. The Indian Navy is thought to have discussed the potential risks of such a move by China in a 12-page top-secret study delivered to the PMO through National Security Advisor Ajit Doval. On April 12, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh would probably give a presentation on these topics to the Cabinet Committee on Security.

Additionally, the proposed radar will be able to monitor US military operations in Diego Garcia. This project in the Sri Lankan forests close to Dondra Bay may involve the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Aerospace Information Research.

Dondra, a little fishing town on Sri Lanka’s southernmost tip, is where you can book whale-watching excursions during the busy seasons of December, January, and April. It is a popular tourist location. Such bays are a major source of income for Sri Lanka.

In the indigenous Sinhala language, the word Dondra is a synonym for “Devi-Nuwara,” where “Devi” stands for “Gods” and “Nuwara” for “City.” Dondra thus means “City of the Gods” in its derivation.

If installed, the Dondra Bay radar may harm India’s regional strategic interests as well as its vital installations in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

ACROSS SYSTEMS, NEW MILITARY HARDWARE WILL BE PURCHASED

For projects valued more than 2.71 lakh crore, the DAC gave its acceptance of need (AoN) over the course of the previous year.

The AoN by the council is the first in a sequence of procedures towards purchasing military equipment under Indian defence procurement regulations.

India is likely to put out tenders for a variety of indigenous weapons and systems in the financial year 2023–24, including light tanks, artillery guns, utility helicopters, modern combat vehicles, and air defence weapons, according to officials familiar with the situation on Saturday. This is done in the midst of a lingering border dispute with China in eastern Ladakh, which will enter its fourth year in May.

India set the stage for the purchase of these military equipment in FY 2022–2023. According to data from the defence ministry, the defence acquisition council (DAC), India’s highest weapons procurement agency, gave projects worth more than 2.71 lakh crore its acceptance of need (AoN) in the previous year. 99% of this procurement will come from domestic companies in an effort to greatly increase self-reliance in the defence manufacturing sector.

The government has made it a high priority to modernise the armed forces with locally built platforms, and plans put up by the armed forces to enhance their capabilities are swiftly approved, according to the authorities.

At the Combined Commanders’ Conference in Bhopal on April 1, Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised that the defence industry would have all the resources, tools, and technologies needed. Modi conducted a security review, evaluated the military’s operational readiness, and ordered them to maintain ready for new and developing security risks.

The AoN by the council is the first in a sequence of procedures towards purchasing military equipment under Indian defence procurement regulations.

The light tank is a crucial piece of equipment the army needs to combat the ongoing danger along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China. The future tank has already been given the name Zorawar after the legendary general of the Dogra monarch Gulab Singh. Advanced situational awareness, active protection systems, and drone integration are just a few of the cutting-edge technology that will be included.

In addition to night-fighting gear, anti-drone weapons, and information, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) platforms, the FICV is one of the primary indigenous assets that the mechanised infantry is targeting. As previously reported by HT, these capabilities will change the mechanised infantry into a more lethal, agile, and integrated force capable of delivering a quick and effective response in battle.

Additionally, the 155mm/52-caliber modern towed artillery gun systems are being considered by the army. (ATAGS). In order to replace outdated firearms with contemporary ones, the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) launched the ATAGS project in 2013. For the production of the cannon, it collaborated with two private companies, Bharat Forge Limited and Tata Advanced Systems Limited. Its range is 48 km.

At the commanders’ meeting, Modi discussed the development towards establishing self-reliance in the defence manufacturing sector. To encourage self-reliance, the government has implemented a number of initiatives in recent years, such as allocating a separate budget for purchasing locally produced military hardware, raising foreign direct investment (FDI) from 49% to 74%, and publishing a list of hundreds of weapons and systems that are prohibited from import.

The country’s armaments exports are being increased while the drive for indigenization is being undertaken. In FY 2022–23, India sold military equipment worth 15,920 crore, a record-high figure and a remarkable tenfold rise from 2016–17. Modi recently attributed the growth to support for Make in India and important changes to encourage growth in the sector.

According to government statistics, exports were 1,521 crore in 2016–17, 4,682 crore in 2017–18, 10,745 crore in 2018–19, 9,115 crore in 2019, 8,434 crore in 2020–21, and 12,814 crore in 2021–22.

A STRONG MESSAGE TO CHINA IS SENT BY PM MODI’S TWEET ON ARUNACHAL

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tweet praising Arunachal Pradesh’s great growth in the villages bordering China has sent a clear message to Beijing after 11 locations in this Northeastern Indian state were recently given new names. Hours before to PM Modi’s tweet, China renamed some Arunachal Pradesh locations that it claimed were in South Tibet. In response to a tweet from Pema Khandu, the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh, who shared images of one of the hydroelectric projects in his home district of Mukto and at Mago village in Tawang, Prime Minister Modi wrote, “A welcome development in the border areas, which will empower those living in the border villages.”

In fact, one of Arunachal Pradesh’s continuing efforts is to establish 50 independent small and micro hydel power projects in the bordering villages with China to supply the Army manning the border with uninterrupted power. “Golden Jubilee Border Illumination Program is in sync with the vision of Hon PM Shri Narendra Modiji that border villages aren’t the last but first to be transformed,” Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Khandu wrote in a tweet.

In light of China’s third renaming of several locations in Arunachal Pradesh, the diplomats at South Block saw PM Modi’s response to Khandu’s tweet addressing the bordering areas in the northeastern state as a powerful message to China. After doing so in April 2017 and December 2021, China has now unilaterally renamed locations in Arunachal Pradesh three times.

“PM Modi’s retweet of Khandu’s tweet should be viewed as a deliberate move against China’s nefarious objective for Arunachal Pradesh. Even though the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson officially disapproved of China renaming locations in Arunachal Pradesh, diplomatic sources claim that nothing could have sent China a more direct message than this tweet by PM Modi. According to officials, the PM’s tweet highlighted New Delhi’s efforts to support the armed forces stationed along China’s borders while also reiterating the government’s focus on the development of Indian regions along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), including Arunachal Pradesh.

According to a diplomatic source, PM Modi’s tweet for the development of Arunachal Pradesh is being promoted significantly and widely as part of a well-thought-out campaign. It has so far received millions of views, likes, and retweets. Following Beijing’s provocative action, it is rumoured that Chinese officials in Delhi and Beijing are keeping an eye on every single tweet regarding Arunachal Pradesh. It indicates that the tweets criticising China have reached their intended audience in Beijing, an official said.

This has sparked a public debate in India and caused some unease in the Chinese camp, so it’s good that some social media users are posting recommendations highlighting the need for India to reevaluate its position on Tibet, a source said.

The huge development of Arunachal Pradesh’s villages, especially those in the areas bordering China, is PM Modi’s main priority. The administration has reiterated its resolve to doing the same in response to PM Modi’s message, an official said. “Only development and increasing tourism activities in Arunachal Pradesh will be the fitting message for China,” the source added. Arindam Bagchi, a spokesperson for the MEA, categorically denounced the Chinese action, asserting that Arunachal Pradesh has always been and always will be an essential and inalienable component of India.

The proposal to convene some of the significant G20 meetings in Arunachal Pradesh also originated with PM Modi. Another important message for China is the participation of diplomats and other important representatives from various nations in the meetings in Arunachal Pradesh. The tweet from Union Law Minister Kiran Rijiju is significant in the context of India’s diplomatic approach to sending a strong message to China. Rijiju posted on Twitter just two days ago that the prestigious G20 conference in Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh, was a genuinely amazing occasion. Leading diplomats and powerful figures from throughout the world experienced India like never before. State also made the world aware of its rich cultural history. Additionally, this tweet appeared two days after China renamed 11 locations in the Northeast.Tweet from the minister

AMRITPAL SINGH, A KHALISTANI SEPARATIST, UNDERWENT SURGERY TO LOOK LIKE BHINDRANWALE IN GEORGIA: SOURCES

Amritpal Singh underwent eye surgery in Georgia to resemble Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, who is currently on the run.

Before returning to India in 2022, fugitive Khalistani separatist Amritpal Singh received eye surgery in Georgia to resemble Khalistani fighter Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, according to sources in the intelligence agency. Amritpal Singh’s assistants, who were charged under the National Security Act (NSA) and are currently being held in Assam’s Dibrugarh jail, made the discovery.

Amritpal Singh’s associates informed authorities that the Khalistani leader spent two years (from 20 June 22 to 19 August 22) in Georgia for the procedure. Amritpal Singh allegedly had eye surgery.

Since a police raid on the extreme preacher’s organisation Waris Punjab De on March 18, the preacher has been on the run. However, he has recently appeared in two alleged films and an audio recording that were posted on social media.

He has often avoided being apprehended by police by shifting his look and location. Eight of extremist preacher Amritpal Singh’s close associates, including his uncle Harjit Singh and Daljit Singh Kalsi, have been detained and transported to Dibrugarh Central Jail as a result of the crackdown on the man. Additionally, police sued them under the strict National Security Act (NSA).

Amritpal Singh, the leader of the group “Waris Punjab De,” attempted to become the modern-day equivalent of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale. Anyone would mistake him for Bhindranwale based on the way he wears his turban, the traditional Sikh garb, and other Sikh insignia. On June 6, 1984, Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale was murdered during Operation Blue Star between the Indian Army and the Khalistani militants.

Amritpal Singh, 30, once lived in Dubai and led an unconventional lifestyle before taking on the position of Waris Punjab De head and fostering separatist ideas. Amritpal Singh was chosen as the next head of Waris Punjab De by his supporters at a ceremony held on September 29, 2022, in Rode village in Moga district, the village of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

Amritpal Singh participated in the Amrit ceremony in Anandpur Sahib after acquiring the position of Waris Punjab De leader. Amritpal allegedly conducted aggressive lectures to enlist the support of radical youths while dressing like Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, the Khalistani theorist who served as his inspiration.

Deep Sidhu, a Punjabi actor and activist, founded Waris Punjab De to “fight for the rights of Punjab and protect its culture.” In 2021, Deep Sidhu died in a car accident. Amritpal Singh unexpectedly arrived in Punjab and was appointed the new Waris Punjab De leader.

But Deep Sidhu’s kin distanced themselves from Amritpal Singh, who they reportedly even charged with abusing the group to push separatist propaganda.

As a result of Amritpal Singh’s appeal for a “Sarbat Khalsa” on Baisakhi, all Punjab police leave has been cancelled till April 14 and the state has been placed on high alert.

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