India Defense minister teaches Chinese soldiers meaning of 'Namaste'

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"But her aggressive gesture seems to have been diluted by her friendly interactions with Chinese soldiers in Nathula", it said, in a direct reference to the 'namaste' gesture.

Sitharaman greets the officers with folded hands and a "namaste". Chinese media outlets too shared the video, in which Sitharaman is seen teaching the meaning of the word "namaste" to the neighboring country's soldiers.

Ever since she took charge as India's first full-time woman defense minister, Nirmala Sitharaman has praised by all quarters for her handling of the ministry.

The Global Times, in an editorial, titled "Sitharaman greeting sends warm signal", said that her traditional "Namastey" greetings to the Chinese soldiers conveyed her hope for peace along the border and "unwillingness to see a new stand-off". Indian sources say that work is being done within Chinese territory, unlike the road-construction that triggered the border dispute back in June. While the Centre has rejected media reports of a "sizeable" Chinese troops presence in Doklam, the neighbouring country reiterated that Doklam belongs to them. India's External Affairs Ministry, however, said status quo prevailed on the plateau.

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"However, she made her aerial survey of Gangtok and surrounding areas from the new Greenfield Pakyong Airport in Sikkim", read statement after her return from the Nathu-la Border during the afternoon", said a statement issued by the Department of Information and Public Relations, Government of Sikkim. She inspected the arsenal at Air Force station and interacted with IAF and army officials.

She was accompanied by Vice Chief of the Army Staff Lt Gen Sarath Chand and GOC-in-C Eastern Command Lt Gen Abhay Krishna.

While the top brass IAF discussed the loss of life during peacetime operations, defence minister told them that the powers given to the service chiefs should be "fully utilised" in achieving required capabilities of the forces.

Thereafter, she visited the Gajraj Corps HQ where she was briefed on the overall security situation in Assam and the Kameng Sector of Arunachal Pradesh and the operational preparedness of the Corps. Here She visited the Forward Post of the Indian Army and China went to the border.