Defence veterans hail strong action

Nibedita Sen
Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Regarding possible retaliation from Pakistan, the former Air Force Chief said that India was not looking for escalation of the attack hence neither civilians nor military pilots were attacked.

PUNE/PANAJI: While lauding the punitive air strikes conducted by the Indian Air Force on the terrorist camps and launchpads in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, senior defence veterans urged the security forces not to get complacent and be ready for fresh terror attack attempts by Pakistan-sponsored militants.

“Air strike requires a lot of effort and it doesn’t happen overnight. We need to have intelligence about the target, enemy and elementary defences over there. Hence, everybody is involved in this operation as Air Force needs political clearance and cannot do it alone,” said former Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal PV Naik (retd).

Regarding possible retaliation from Pakistan, the former Air Force Chief said that India was not looking for escalation of the attack hence neither civilians nor military pilots were attacked.

“We have attacked the terror organisation and the whole world is sympathetic to our cause. We used aerial route instead of ground because certainly Pakistan would have been expecting another ground attack from India like it was done after attack on Uri army camp. But since we never used air power across the LoC, Pakistan must not have expected us to launch air strikes, as it was never done after 1971 Bangladesh liberation war,” he further added.

He, however, advised India to tighten up its air defence mechanism and the security forces in Kashmir Valley and areas bordering Pakistan should be on complete alert.

When asked about the utility of Mirage 2000 series used in Kargil operations, and on Tuesday, ACM Naik said both Mirage and SU-30 are equally good and have ability to do a pinpoint strike from a really high altitude.

“I am sure, there would be a support of Sukhoi as a back-up even though Mirage was used for the strike,” he said.

Former Vice-Air Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Bhushan Gokhale asserted that India did not violate any agreement, rather has taken decisive action against the terror attack orchestrated by Pakistan.

“We have taken the correct step and I am very proud as this was a well orchestrated strike. There were intelligence machinery, Aviation War-fighting Cell (AWC) to combat safely, used the correct technology and ensured accuracy,” he added.

According to the former United Nations Protection Force Commander, Lt Gen Satish Nambiar, this event may not help civilian establishment to restore peace in the Valley. However, the anti-national forces should be told in no uncertain terms that anti-national activities will not be tolerated.

“However, our troops in Valley need to be more alert and shun complacency,” he added.

Group Captain TP Srivastava (Retd) felt proud of the Indian government’s resolve and decision making. “Finally air power has been used as it must be used. Pakistan will not retaliate. They will run to USA. Should they retaliate, our next target should be Kamra Aeronautical Facility. We will suffer some attrition but destroying Kamra will kill ‘two birds with one stone’. It will sort out China’s JF-17 fighter aircraft programme for good,” Gp Capt Srivastava said.

Group Captain Johnson Chacko attributed use of electronic warfare measures (EWMs) for the lack of immediate retaliation from Pakistan during air strike.

“EWMs would have been deployed to confuse and deceive the PAF radar operators to ensure that their air defence did not interfere. The strike aircraft would have been above the envelope of the shoulder fired missiles, having learnt the lesson in Kargil. Laser guided bombs are generally dropped from altitude,” Gp Capt Chacko said.

He also mentioned that nuclear retaliation will invite massive retaliation from our side. “About 7 crore will perish on both sides. Pakistan will lose 40 per cent of population and we about 5 per cent. This is cold mathematical calculation without humanitarian considerations,” he added.

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