Operation Myanmar: India considered air strikes as well

New Delhi,Manan Kumar: Before launching surgical strikes inside Myanmar on June 9, India had even thought about carrying out air strikes with the help of Sukhoi and MIG 29 or MI-17 helicopter gunships but gave up the idea as it could have done collateral damage and brought international glare on India besides unnecessary unease in diplomatic relations especially with China that has strategic and economic interests in Myanmar.

Representatioanl image.
Representatioanl image.

As against the popular belief that the decision to carry out strikes inside Myanmar was taken by the cabinet committee on security affairs, the decision was arrived at a meeting headed by union home minister Rajnath Singh at his north block office on the day when the northeast insurgent groups killed 18 Army personnel in an ambush attack in Chandel district of Manipur, highly placed sources revealed to dna.

The decision was placed before Prime Minister Narendra Modi as soon as he came back from Bangladesh visit for the final go ahead which he immediately agreed to.

Such decisions are not taken in CCS, you don’t need to prepare a cabinet note for such decisions, said sources.

Home minister was pretty decisive in the meeting in which defence minister Manohar Parrikar, MoS home Kiren Rijiju, NSA, Ajit Doval, home secretary L C Goyal, defence secretary G Mohan Kumar, Army chief Dalbir Singh Suhag and heads of RAW and IB were also present.

“Home minister did not like when the Army chief showed little hesitation in striking inside Myanmar and sought more time for preparations. The meeting weighed all options including carrying out air strikes by fighter jets and even helicopter gunships finally it decided to send special forces of Army. It was a difficult decision to arrive at for obvious pitfalls,” sources said.

In fact, but for the hesitation, the strikes could have been much sharper, giving lesser time to insurgent groups to anticipate and flee from one camp that was being run NSCN (K) military commander Niki Sumi, sources added.

Conceding that the faux pas of revealing operational details by junior I&B minister R S Rathore led to call off more such strikes, sources said, preparations are being done to carry out strikes again in near future.

“Care will be taken this time not to reveal anything,” said sources.

Posted by on June 18, 2015. Filed under Editorial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.