NEW DELHI: PM Narendra Modi has reached Pathankot, where suspected Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists carried out an attack this week.
The Prime Minister reached the Pathankot air base at around 11:30 am. He will be assessing the situation at the air base after the combing operation finished on Friday.
The visit holds significance in the midst speculations that the Foreign Secretary-level talks between India and Pakistan could be called off by New Delhi in the wake of the attack. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday put the ball in Pakistan’s court, saying the future course of action would be decided after Islamabad’s response to actionable intelligence provided with regard to the fidayeen strike.
“As far as we are concerned, the ball is now in Pakistan’s court. The immediate issue in front of us is Pakistan’s response to the terrorist attack and the actionable intelligence that has been provided to it,” said MEA official spokesperson Vikas Swarup, adding that the government’s policy towards Pakistan is clear and consistent.
In the course of investigation, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has found several articles on the bodies of the terrorists and from the crime scene that further confirm their Pakistan link. The investigation agencies have reportedly found wrappers and packets of medicines and syringes bearing name of Karachi and Pakistan from a building at the Pathankot Air base, where terrorists had taken shelter during the attack. Gurdaspur Superintendent of Police Salwinder Singh has been summoned to the NIA headquarters on Monday for questioning.
“Was briefed in great detail on how our forces neutralised such a serious terrorist attack. Noted with satisfaction the decision-making and its execution, the considerations that went into our tactical response. Also noted coordination among various field units. Lauded bravery & determination of our men & women on the ground. They are our pride,” said PM Modi
PM Narendra Modi was received by the Chiefs of Defence Forces upon his arrival at Pathankot airbase on Saturday.
Pakistan Defence Minister Khwaja Muhammad Asif has said that no terrorist group will be allowed to derail the dialogue process with India. Talking to a news channel, he said that strict action is being taken against elements involved in terror activities.
Modi is visiting the area where terrorists were holed up and where soldiers were martyred. He will also meet injured soldiers.
India has indicated to Pakistan that crucial talks between the Foreign Secretaries of both countries are unlikely to go ahead next week unless Pakistan delivers “prompt and decisive action” on the evidence it has given.
The US feels that time has come for Pakistan to walk the talk on the promises it made — both in public and in private conversations — that there would be no discrimination in its action against terrorist networks and bring the perpetrators of the Pathankot attack to justice.
With ANI input