Nirmala Sitharaman visits troops at the border

Nirmala Sitharaman shaking hands with Jawans posted at Siachen. Twitter screengrab

The minister, who took charge earlier this month, will also visit forward posts on the Line of Control (LoC) along the Pakistani-administered Kashmir and the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China in the Ladakh region.

This comes as the first visit of Nirmala Sitharaman to the princely state after she assumed office as the Defence Minister.

The spokesman further said that the Defence Minister praised the commanders for the high level of synergy achieved with the the state police and the Central Armed Police Forces.

During her two-day tour, Sitharaman will also meet with soldiers at the world's highest battlefield Siachen situated at an altitude of 5,400 meters.

As she landed in the state in the Old Airfield, she was received by the Northern Army Commander and Chinar Corps Commander. A majority of these attempts were foiled. "She was told that due to the alertness of troops, a top commander of Hizbul Mujahideen Qayoom Najar could not infiltrate to Valley from another side of LoC in Uri sector and was killed there", sources said.

Army sources said Sitharaman's visit was aimed at sending across the message that the country was prepared to undertake more such operations in the future, as and when needed. The two leaders discussed several issues related to the prevailing situation in the state. The militants, who were moving openly, have now gone into hiding in the forest areas.

Sitharaman interacted with the troops and commended their dedication and commitment towards their duties in the challenging circumstances. An official spokesman said the meeting lasted an hour.

Later in the evening, the defence minister called on Governor N N Vohra.

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