PM holds meet on future challenges

As the country faces new terror threat from drones with three incidents in Jammu in the last three days, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday held a meeting with Defence Minister Rajnath, Home Minister Amit Shah and National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval.

The high-level meeting lasting more than an hour discussed future challenges in the defence sector and the need to equip the security forces with modern weapon systems.

Earlier in the day, the three Services Chiefs and Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat briefed Rajnath about the current situation in Jammu.

Rajnath reviewed the issue soon after returning from a three-day visit to Ladakh to take stock of operational readiness of the armed forces and inaugurated 63 bridges.

Similarly, IAF chief RKS Bhadauria also returned from an official visit to Bangladesh.  Rajnath and Bhadauria, however, were in regular touch with the IAF teams in New Delhi and Jammu since the drone attack on the airbase there on Sunday.

Jammu airbase houses strategic assets of the IAF including MI-17 helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).  They play an important and vital role in anti-terrorist operations in Jammu and Kashmir.

Initial probe suggests the drone attack was aimed at the helicopters and the UAVs.  However, the crude bombs launched by the drones fell short of these crucial assets, sources said. Fighter jets are not based at this airfield.

It was the first ever attack using drones and General Rawat said on Monday the security agencies will have to start preparing for future generation warfare. Drones and such elements will change the nature of warfare, he added.  Incidentally, this is the second terrorist attack on an airbase.  The first one was at the Pathankot airbase in 2016.

In an interview to a television channel, the CDS also said the three Services and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) are working to develop anti-drone technology.

In fact, the DRDO has developed the technology to detect and shoot down the hostile drone, he said. The DRDO system can bring down the drone at a range of two to three kms.

Moreover, the DRDO has transferred the anti-drone technology to the public sector Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and is willing to share the know how with private sector players also, sources said.

Source

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