New Delhi, Oct 30 (PTI): India has dealt with the “worst crisis” in decades along its border with China with “firmness and maturity” despite facing the challenge of the coronavirus pandemic, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Thursday.
In an address at a leading think-tank in Paris, Shringla mentioned two recent terrorist incidents in France, one of which he said had its origins in Pakistan, noting that the civilised world needs to act with firmness to address the threat of terrorism.
Shringla said India and France face similar non-traditional security threats in the form of radicalism and terrorism, and the fight today is not against specific communities or individuals but against a “radical politico-religious ideology”.
Delving into major geo-strategic issues, he said the immediate challenges have not been able to distract India from broader strategic goals, especially in the Indo-Pacific Region where it is moving purposefully at multiple levels to create an “open, inclusive architecture”.
Referring to cross border terrorism from Pakistan, the foreign secretary said India has continued to ward off the menace from its western border.
Shringla arrived here as part his week-long tour of France, Germany and the UK.
“Despite the pandemic, we have dealt with the worst crisis in decades on our border with China and we have done so with firmness and maturity. At the same time, we have continued to ward off terrorism from across our western border,” he said.
“Our immediate challenges have not distracted us from broader strategic goals, especially in the Indo-Pacific Region, where we are moving purposefully at multiple levels to create an open, inclusive architecture. India is emerging at the centre of a network of initiatives,” he added.
Referring to threat of terrorism and radicalism, Shringla said the radical ideology espouses violence and separatism, very often fanned and supported by foreign influence, adding such forces seek to destabilize pluralist societies.
“It was horrifying to hear about the two recent terrorist incidents in France, one of which, as is very often the case, had its origins in our western neighbourhood — Pakistan,” he said.
“For the past three decades, we have experienced what unbridled radicalism can wreak and what malevolent violent forces it can unleash. The civilised world needs to act together and act with firmness to address this threat to our cherished democratic value systems,” Shringla added.