The Indian air force in a retaliatory action shot down a Pakistani F-16 jet which had crossed the Line of Control and violated the Indian air space.
As per the report, it appears that the jet was fleeing back into the Pakistani air space and finally went down in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir’s (POK) Lam valley. The pilot appears to have jumped as a parachute was visible soon after the strike.
Pakistani fighter jets violated Indian air space in Nowshera sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district but were pushed back by Indian aircraft. Pakistani jets also dropped bombs when forced back by IAF jets.
Following the Pakistan F-16 being shot down, the National Security Advisor (NSA) and other top officials are briefing the Prime Minister.
The shooting down of the F-16 was part of the Indian Air Force’s successful confronting and pushing back of Pakistani jets in two sectors of Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday after an infiltration attempt into Indian airspace. Pakistan has closed its own airspace following India bringing down its fighter jet.
The incursion comes a day after the Indian Air Force had successfully eliminated terror training camps in Pakistan and PoK which were functioning with full impunity. The very fact that Pakistan tried to use official assets to come into Indian air space, just a day later, is only a further corroboration of the narrative that they fully support those in the JeM, the LeT and the Hizbul Mujahideen camps eliminated by India.
Following the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) strike on Jaish-e-Mohammed’s biggest terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot, Pakistan carried out multiple ceasefire violations which resulted in the injuries to five Indian soldiers.
The Indian Air Force’s strike included a team of 12 Mirage 2000 jets dropping six bombs on the terror camp. Up to 25 top commanders of the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) top commanders have been eliminated in the operation.
In retaliation, an Indian Air Force (IAF) chopper crashed in Jammu and Kashmir’s Budgam. Two bodies have been found, said the police. Visuals showed the wrecked fuselage in flames and a large number of villagers standing around it.
The helicopter a Russian made Mi-17, crashed in an open field near Garend Kalaan village in Budgam at 10.05 am. The chopper broke into two and caught fire immediately, the officials said.
All airspace at Jammu, Srinagar and Leh, close to the border with Pakistan, has been shut down indefinitely while commercial flights have been put on hold across Amritsar, Chandigarh and neighbouring areas. The capital has been put on high alert.
Pakistan too has shut down its airspace and stops all domestic and international flight operations from Lahore, Multan, Faisalabad, Sialkot and Islamabad airports.
No support to Pakistan
Husain Haqqani, the former Pakistani Ambassador to the US has acknowledged that no country has come out in favour of Pakistan.
“It is telling that no country, including China, has spoken out in favour of Pakistan after India’s air strike on a terror camp in the country, asserting that it was reflective that the world’s patience on terrorist safe havens is running thin.”
The strike was the first by the Indian Air Force (IAF) inside Pakistan after the 1971 war.
“It is telling that no country has spoken out in Pakistan’s favour after the Indian air strike,” Haqqani told PTI.
“Even China called for restraint on both sides instead of supporting Pakistan in protesting India’s violation of Pakistan’s air space”.
India had launched air strikes against militants in Pakistani territory, in a major escalation of tensions between the two countries.
Pakistan has always allowed militant groups to operate on its territory and its security agencies played a role in the suicide attack on 14 February, which was claimed by JeM and killed 40 Indian CRPF jawans.
Pakistan denies any role and says it does not provide a safe haven to militants.