Former IAF Chief AY Tipnis says IAF strike across LoC “conveys that though Pakistan uses terrorism as a tool against India, we are within our rights of International law to take such action.”
Shared News: Updated: February 26, 2019 12:03:16 pm
Former IAF Chief AY Tipnis said, “It is being reported that 12 jets targeted four places, if that is true then it is big and something that most had not imagined.” (Express archive photo)
Hours after Indian Air Force Mirage 2000 fighters destroyed multiple terrorist camps across the Line of Control, former Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal AY Tipnis, who commanded the IAF during the Kargil War, told The Indian Express, “From what I am gathering, this is a brilliant, well-planned action and unequivocal message that there is a limit to India’s tolerance. It is being reported that 12 jets targeted four places, if that is true then it is big and something that most had not imagined. This shows that India’s action was not knee jerk in nature and a clear message that we are acting and not merely reacting to what Pakistan has done.”
Asked about the possibility of escalation, Tipnis said, “There always is a possibility of escalation and I am sure a thorough planning has already been done preempting any such scenario. Rather, the time that India has taken after the Pulwama attack, must have gone into preparing the defences. We also must understand that many times, the escalation is not incremental but can go from say zero to a hundred in no time and we have to be prepared for that. I think this also conveys that though Pakistan uses terrorism as a tool against India, we are within our rights of International law to take such action.”
ANI quoted IAF sources as saying 1000-kg bombs were dropped on terror camps across the LoC, adding that 12 Mirage 2000 jets took part in the operation. Pakistan armed forces spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor claimed Indian aircraft “intruded from Muzaffarabad sector” and “dropped a payload” near Balakot “facing timely and effective response from Pakistan Air Force”.
Leaders from different political parties have also reacted to the strike. Political parties appeared to have united once again after the February 14 Pulwama terror attack in lauding the IAF. Congress president Rahul Gandhi, party leader Shashi Tharoor, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal, tweeted congratulating the armed forces for striking terror camps in PoK.
“I salute the pilots of the IAF,” Rahul Gandhi tweeted at around 9:30 am with tricolour symbols. In an hour, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee joined Gandhi and tweeted: “IAF also means India’s Amazing Fighters. Jai Hind.”
Union Minister Gajendra Shekhawat was also quick to post his reaction. His tweet was more political. “This is Modi’s Hindustan, it will not only enter your house but will strike at you (Ye Modi ka Hindustan hai, ghar mein ghusega bhi aur marega bhi). Air Force carried out aerial strike early morning today at terror camps across the LoC and Completely destroyed it …every drop of blood will be accounted for. This is just a beginning…. will not let the country down (Ek ek katra khoon ka hisab hoga. Yeh toh ek shuruat hai, ye desh nahi jhukne dunga),” he tweeted around the same time as that of Gandhi.
“I salute the bravery of Indian Air Force pilots who have made us proud by striking terror targets in Pakistan,” Kejriwal tweeted.
However, BJP general secretary Ram Madhav lauded both the political leadership as well as the forces for the operation.
“Every Indian who had d (the) pain n (and) anguish of d (the) martyrdom of our forces is greatly relieved and delighted this morning. Salute to d (the) Air Force for a meticulous operation. Our forces r (are) world class anyway. It is d political will of our PM n (and) team that made all d (the) difference,” he tweeted.
Every Indian who had d pain n anguish of d martyrdom of our forces is greatly relieved and delighted this morning. Salute to d Air Force for a meticulous operation. Our forces r world class anyway. It is d political will of our PM n team that made all d difference.
Great job by the #IndianAirForce.The #IAFStrikes have sent the much-needed signal to Pakistan and the terrorists it’s harbouring – don’t think you can get away with acts like the #PulwamaAttack. Bravo to the #IAF men and my full support for the action,” tweeted Capt Amarinder Singh, senior Congress leader and Chief Minister of Punjab.