Chennai: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday asserted that India decided to target terror launch pads since Pakistan failed to take a call on the matter.
“The action we took on February 26 made it clear that Pakistan was not acting on terrorism and continued to train, fund, endow and support them. Since Pakistan did not take a call on terrorism, we took a decision to hit out at that nerve centre which was training, funding and giving capacity to what they call ‘Fidayeen’. Since we had enough intelligence to say that this is where it is coming out of, we pre-emptively attacked their terror camps,” she said while addressing an event here.
Less than two weeks after 40 CRPF personnel lost their lives in a terror attack carried out by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) in South Kashmir’s Pulwama, the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out aerial strikes targetting terror launch pads across the border in Balakot.
Elaborating on this, Sitharaman said the air strike was “not an act of aggression but a targeted, pointed and focused attack on the terrorists”
“Prime Minister Modi has, since 2014, been going around the world and meeting with countries to talk about how Pakistan needs to be isolated for not taking concrete action against terrorism. There have been constant efforts by us to isolate Pakistan and identify their terror camps,” she said. “Pakistan is kept at the grey list, short of being blacklisted anytime. It is also because we are constantly making sure Pakistan is not kept off the hook.”
“Even after the terror attack at Pulwama was claimed by one of the groups of Pakistan, they did not act. We took the step with the help of the Intelligence and pointed lasers on the terrorists. We have challenged that by the action of February 26, when we attacked their terror camps,” she added.