Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the endeavours of the Indian Government to highlight the strengths of the Indian Navy have brought about a positive change. She said that she could see a positive energy in the Commanders because of the ways in which the Government of India has been highlighting the maritime strengths of the country. “It will be a force to reckon with in the India-Pacific Maritime area,” she said.
Addressing the Naval Commanders’ Conference she said that the Conference began on a positive note and all the important issues concerning the Navy have been discussed.
“The Conference began very well. We have had a very pointed discussion on issues raised by the Commanders, and the Navy Chief. We will have a clear plan of the Navy,” she said.
“A large part of the Navy’s request between 2017 and 2018 has been taken to a logical conclusion. A fair deal of navy requests has been taken care of. Between 2018 and 2019, the request of the Navy, both short term and long term are being well received,” she added.
Regarding the inclusion of women in the Armed Forces, the Defence Minister said, “We have discussed it in details at several levels. This has been discussed in the Ministry. I truly want more women to be part of the armed forces.”
“I will try that all the forces in a unified manner decide on how more women can be a part of the armed forces,” the Defence Minister assured. The bi-annual Naval Commanders Conference commenced on Tuesday and will focus on the Navy’s “Mission-Based Deployments”, larger issues of geo-statistics in the Indian Ocean among others as specified by the Navy Chief Sunil Lanba.