Credible evidence to show Pak lost F-16 jet in Feb 27 air duel: IAF

NEW DELHI: More than six weeks after the air duel over Nowshera in Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian Air Force on Monday said it had credible evidence clearly indicating that Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has lost an F-16 fighter jet in that fight.

Credible evidence to show Pak lost F-16 jet in Feb 27 air duel: IAF

Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor addressing a press conference at South Block in New Delhi on Monday, April 8, 2019. PTI

Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service
New Delhi, April 8

More than six weeks after the air duel over Nowshera in Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian Air Force on Monday said it had credible evidence clearly indicating that Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has lost an F-16 fighter jet in that fight. 

The IAF and PAF were locked in an air duel on February 27 when a MiG 21 piloted by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman was hit. 

Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor Assistant Chief of IAF, Operations, making the first official statement on the matter said, “There is no doubt that two aircraft went down in the aerial engagement on February 27, one was the Bison (MiG 21) of the IAF and the other was a F-16 of PAF, conclusively identified by its electronic signature and radio transcripts.”

The senior IAF officer made the statement at South Block on Monday. “Due to security and confidentiality concerns we are restricting the information being shared in the public domain,” he said. 

The IAF team showed radar images of how the PAF fighter jets — the F-16 and JF 17 -- were being tracked. IAF showed two images captured within seconds of each other showing how the F-16 dropped of the radar. 

“Analysis of electronic emissions have shown that the aircraft picked up the intercepts from air-borne radars and radio transcripts indicated F-16s in the area directly in front of Wing Commander Abhinandan’s aircraft,” Air Vice Marshal Kapoor added. 

“The PAF’s attack against our military installations was thwarted and the PAF was unable to achieve its military objective,” he added. 

The IAF official cited radio intercept from Pakistan that showed the capture of two pilots, one being Wing Commander Abhinandan and other one being admitted to a military hospital.

Two aircraft had gone down within 60-90 seconds of each other and two separate parcahutes were seen within 5-6 seconds of each other. 

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