The Indian Army does not communalise, was Northern Command chief Lt Gen D Anbu's response today to AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi's pointing out that Kashmiri Muslims had laid down their lives in the Sunjuwan attack.
The General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Northern Command's comment came a day after the AIMIM chief slammed those questioning the patriotism of Muslims and Kashmiri Muslims.
Four Kashmiri soldiers were among the six Army personnel killed in the attack on the 36 Brigade of the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry camp in Sunjuwan on Saturday.
"We take on the religion of our troops and we do not communalise any of them. There is 'sarva dharma sthal' in every formation. Go to Badamibagh (a cantonment in Srinagar) or Udhampur (the Northern Command headquarters) or even my residence," the officer said.
"It is only for people who do not know the inside functioning of the armed forces. They are the one who are actually making such statements," he said, adding "they need to visit us to see themselves how we put everything aside and live together".
"In this (Sunjuwan attack) incident, the Kashmiri Muslims have laid down their lives. Why aren't you talking about it? This is a reminder to all those nationalists who question my integrity and the love for this country," the AIMIM chief said.
"The people of Jammu and Kashmir have shown (by participating in large numbers in the funeral prayers of the soldiers)... it is a testimony for all those who wanted to communalise it," the officer told reporters here.
On the impact of filing of an FIR against Major Aditya Kumar over the killing of three youths in south Kashmir's Shopian district last month, he said, "I am heading the Northern Command and I can say it with confidence that the issue of Major Aditya has not dented the morale of my troops, not even a bit, not even an iota."
"I can say it with confidence because I meet them, I move around and I speak through my commanders and know the pulse," he said.
The officer said that there were no human rights (HRs) violation reported against the Army in the last one year.
"In the last one year, you have not seen any human rights violations taking place. That is (because of the) direction from me to the commanders. You will not find any one of them willfully indulging in it. Our intentions are clear so there is nothing to worry about," he said.
However, Anbu said that the case was sub-judice and would take its course.
"The Defence minister had made a statement during her visit to Jammu that the government and the ministry of defence are totally behind the soldiers and armed forces," he said.
In response to a question about an insiders role in the Sunjuwan terror attack and any plans to shift the training centre of the regiment from Srinagar, Anbu said "I am in an uniformed force and do not distinguish the personnel under my command. We do not work like that in the Indian Army."
"Someone who joins us gets motivated by our ethos and functioning, even if he is not motivated before. There is no doubt in my mind and our organisation is very strong. The new recruits mould into our system," he said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)