Young ‘journalists’ impress defence minister


New Delhi: “Are we children safe?” “What can we children do to help our armed forces?” What we can do in fight against terrorism?” These were among the barrage of questions Defence Minister A.K. Antony fielded Thursday from school students in the avatar of journalists.

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The seriousness of the questions posed by the students of the Army Public School, Noida, for their programme “News Buzz” set the defence minister thinking.

“What we can do in the fight against terrorism?” a young girl asked Antony.

“In the present day world, (terrorist) violence is not coming from the state. It is by non-state actors. It can be anywhere – in your school or in a nearby locality. If something happens, you should show valour. Whenever possible, you should bring it to the notice of the security forces,” Antony replied.

Responding to another question, the defence minister assured the students that they were safe in India.

“You have asked a serious question. The security situation around India is becoming more challenging and more serious. But compared to the situation around us, the situation in India is far better.

“You can rest assured that whenever there is a serious threat, the Indian armed forces will protect the borders by sacrificing their lives if they have to,” Antony said.

Asked how children can help the armed forces, Antony said: “I invite as many as possible from the younger generation to join the armed forces.”

The Q&A session was conducted after Antony attended a cultural programme organised by the National Cadets Corps in the run-up to the Republic Day Jan 26.