Sino-Indian border is calm, says army chief

Barrackpore (West Bengal), April 7 (IANS) Indian Army chief General Bikram Singh Sunday said “peace and tranquility” now prevails on the Sino-Indian border.

“There is peace and tranquility on the Line of Actual Control with China. There is no problem,” General Singh told the media on the sidelines of an ex-servicemen’s rally here.

About the third joint military exercise with China, he said: “Dates have not been fixed yet. They will be fixed.”

The third army-to-army exercise would be held after five years. While the first bilateral exercise in China’s Kunming was held in December 2007, the second hand-in-hand exercise, as war gaming is called by the two sides, was held at Belgaum in Karnataka in December 2008.

Asked for comment on Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma’s view that foreign direct investment (FDI) limit in the country’s defence sector should be raised to at least 49 percent from the current 26 percent, General Singh said: “Let me analyse this aspect.”

The commerce and industry ministry had initially recommended raising the FDI cap in the defence sector to 74 percent to help India become one of the major defence producers of the world.

However, the proposal was met with opposition from the Ministry of Defence, which argued that it could lead to security concerns.

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