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Antony asks armed forces to perform their duties with utmost caution


August 14, 2011 - New Delhi

Defence Minister AK. Antony on Sunday asked the armed forces to perform their duties with utmost caution and to take special care of human rights in Jammu and Kashmir and Northeast.

Addressing the armed forces personnel on the eve of Independence Day, Antony said: "

Whereas on the one hand, bravery is required to deal with terrorists, at the same time, our Armed Forces must perform their duties with utmost caution. Armed Forces personnel must take special care of human rights in Jammu and Kashmir and North-east and other places."

"The modernization of our Armed Forces has always been on the top of our priority. We will continue to provide our Armed Forces with the latest and the most modern weapon systems and equipment to help them discharge their duties and rank among the best fighting forces in the world," he added.

Stating that the government has taken some steps to increase the capacity of the Armed Forces, Antony said: "We have taken some steps to increase the capacity of our Armed Forces. A new Officers Training Academy (O.T.A) has been set up at Gaya. Similarly, an Indian Coast Guard Academy has been set up at Azzhikkal in Kerala. We hope that in the years to come, this will lead to some increase in the number of officers in the Armed Forces."

Talking about the corruption related issues, Antony said : "Our Government wants all-round development of the defence forces and Jawans. But we need help and cooperation from all of you. Recently, a few corruption related cases have come to light. This has created a poor image and a somewhat negative impact on the image of our Armed Forces in the public eye."

"Today, I want to say to all of you that it is the responsibility of each one of you to do your work with complete devotion, fairness, honesty and truthfulness. All of you have to keep the trust placed by the people of the nation in our Armed Forces," he added.

Antony further said the ex-servicemen constitute an important component of our Armed Forces

"We have taken several steps for the welfare of our ex-servicemen. 199 new polyclinics and 15 new regional health centres have been started to provide better health care facilities to ex-servicemen. Besides, a pilot online automation scheme has been started to address pension related problems," he said.

The Defence Minister said the armed Armed Forces provide assistance not only within the country, but also to other countries.

"In recent years, relief material was sent to Sri Lanka and to Kyrgyzstan. Our Armed Forces received widespread praise for these efforts," said Antony.

"The Armed Forces personnel have also performed admirably in the sporting arena. Our defence forces did the nation proud at the XIX Commonwealth Games in Delhi in 2010. We awarded Rs. 12 lakh to every gold medal winner, Rs. 7 lakh to silver medal winner and Rs. 5 lakh to bronze medal winner," he added.

Antony further said the government will try its best to open up more and more avenues for women in Armed Forces to provide them more opportunities.

ANI

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