Army Chief General MM Naravane.
Army Chief General MM Naravane.

CAG report 'a little outdated', every jawan who goes to Siachen gets personal clothing worth approx. Rs 1 lakh: Army Chief

ANI | Updated: Feb 04, 2020 17:17 IST

New Delhi [India], Feb 4 (ANI): Army Chief General MM Naravane on Tuesday said the report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) tabled in parliament on Monday regarding condition of troops in high altitude areas was "a little outdated" and stressed that every jawan who goes to Siachen gets personal clothing worth approximately Rs 1 lakh.
"That CAG report pertains to the year 2015-16. So it is not the report of the present times. It is a little outdated in that sense. But I would like to assure you that as of today -- 2020, we are very well prepared," he said while speaking to reporters here.
Asserting that 'every jawan who goes to Siachen gets personal clothing worth approximately Rs 1 lakh', the Army Chief said: "That is the kind of preparation we do, that is the way we equip every man before he goes up and similar is the case with special rations which are authorised to anyone who is deployed in such difficult areas. We are making sure whatever their needs are, are met."
On January 22, ANI had reported that Indian soldiers deployed in the world's highest battlefield Siachen glacier are getting personal kit worth around Rs one lakh for protection against extreme cold conditions there.
Along with the personal kit for protection against winters, every soldier also gets equipment worth around Rs 1.5 lakhs for survival and moving around the Siachen glacier during their deployment there, Army sources had told ANI.
"As things improve, as new technology comes in, as better, lighter clothing comes in...we will continue introducing those also. We will make sure our men are looked after at all times," he said.
Speaking about the defence budget, General Naravane said: "The Defence Budget has seen a modest increase of about 8 per cent year on year. We will be studying how to manage this budget and how to make full use of it. And we will continue to modernise and not withstanding what budget allocations are made...the last year itself we have inducted more than 4-5 different kind of weapon systems. Modernisation has never been an issue notwithstanding the budget allocation."
The defence budget was hiked from Rs 3.18 lakh crore to Rs 3.37 lakh crore in the Union Budget 2020 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday.
For modernisation and buying new weapon systems, defence forces have been allocated Rs 1,10,734 crore which is Rs 10,340 more than what was provided in last year's budget.
Speaking about the facility created by Army in Manesar for the Indian nations returning back from China in the wake of coronavirus outbreak, Army Chief said: "The coronavirus has become a global epidemic and it is going to affect all the countries in the world. It is going to affect us also. We had a number of our nationals at Wuhan and other places in China. And as part of the overall national effort, we are also chipping in to help out. It is to that extent that we have made a small camp at Manesar where we had an existing facility to house our troops."
"We can take care of about 200-250 people at any point of time. It is a very basic facility. As far as the camp is concerned, we have put our medical detachment there monitoring the people who are there on a daily basis. As and when anybody is showing any symptoms, then he is being screened more carefully before he is cleared for being sent back home," he said. (ANI)