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June 10, 1999
India 'not well equipped to fight intruders'
The Indian troops fighting Pakistani intruders in the Kargil and Drass sectors ''are not well equipped to take on the enemy''.
The basic equipment, which the Indian Army had been demanding for years, had not been provided, according to Lieutenant General (retired) Satish Nambiar, director of the United Services Institute.
''The basic equipment including the battlefield surveillance equipment, which the army has been demanding for years, has not been provided and the armed forces are now paying for it in Kargil,'' he said at a seminar in New Delhi.
''This is something which has to be done and has to be done. You have to make a move to equip them. When the armed forces make their requirements, they keep all other requirements of the country in mind. They are not fools. They make measured requirements,'' he said
He said that ''if Pakistan decided to go on a full-fledged war with India, New Delhi should make sure it is fully prepared''.
In reply to a question on the effectiveness of the Bofors gun in such areas, he said, ''It is a good gun. The controversy about the weapon was not created by the armed forces.''
While appreciating the use of air power which showed ''our determination to handle such situations,'' he said the terrain nevertheless was not the best place to use the Indian Air Force.
''You cannot use supersonic jets to pinpoint small groups of the localised enemy. But it certainly created an impact on Pakistan that we will do whatever we can under such circumstances.''
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