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Surgical Strikes: Indian Army keen on releasing video footage, says report

NEW DELHI: To answer those who are alleging that the surgical strikes on terror launch pads across the Line on Control (LoC) never took place, the Indian Army is keen on releasing the footage of the September 29 strikes.

According to a report in the Economic Times, Indian armed forces have given the green signal to the government to release the footage. “The army is keen that India release evidence that will answer those alleging the strikes never happened,” said army officers, speaking off the record with the daily.

However, the report also said that the decision on the release of the footage rests with the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

The report also quoted another senior government official saying that the proof was available with the government. “There is no doubt at all that the strikes inflicted heavy damage. Proof is available with the government that clearly shows our troops engaging the targets effectively,” an official said.

Another report published by the Indian Express, said that the bodies of those killed in clashes were loaded onto trucks for secret burials, corroborating India’s claims that it carried out strikes.

Over the last few days, leaders of various political parties have demanded proof on the surgical strikes conducted by the security forces.

Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha had on Tuesday refused to answer any questions on the recent surgical strike, describing it as a ‘sensitive issue.’

Seven terror launch pads across the LoC were targeted by the Indian Army on the night of September 28 in a nearly five-hour-long operation during which heli-borne and ground forces were deployed.

Amid ongoing uproar over the demand of proof by leaders of various political parties on the surgical strikes conducted by the security forces across the Line of Control (LoC), a report on Wednesday said that the bodies of those killed in clashes were loaded onto trucks for secret burials, corroborating India’s claims that it carried out strikes.

According to Indian Express, eyewitness accounts of the strikes on the terror launch pads by people living across the LoC said that the bodies of those killed were loaded onto trucks for secret burials.

Corroborating India’s claim, they also said that a brief intense firing took place, which also destroyed makeshift buildings that housed jihadists. The eyewitnesses also provided the details of targeted locations which have not been made public by the government of India and Pakistan.

The report also said that an eyewitness said he was told by local residents that five to six bodies were loaded onto a truck early next morning, and possibly transported to the nearest major Lashkar camp at Chalhana.

A day ago, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam had questioned surgical strike and said tweeted, “Every Indian wants #SurgicalStrikesAgainstPak but not a fake one to extract just political benefit by #BJP. Politics over national interest.”

The BJP had also hit out at Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Congress party for raising questions. “Mr Kejriwal, you need to know, today you are the headline in Pakistani media. My appeal to Kejriwal would be politics is separate but please don’t do or say anything that will demoralise our armed forces,” he added.

Seven terror launch pads across the LoC were targeted by the Indian Army on the night of 28 September in a nearly five-hour-long operation during which heli-borne and ground forces were deployed.

The announcement of the strikes came 11 days after the attack by Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad on an Indian army camp in Uri in Kashmir, after which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said the attackers will not go “unpunished” and that they will not be forgiven.

However, Pakistan has rejected India’s claim of a ‘surgical strike’ across the Line of Control (LoC), saying that the incident was ‘cross-border fire’. “There has been no surgical strike by India, instead there had been cross border fire initiated and conducted by India which is existential phenomenon. As per rules of engagement, the same was strongly and befittingly responded by Pakistani troops,” Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) had said in its press release after India announced conducting the strikes.

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