Message to Pakistan was, don’t mess with us, says IAF ex-Chief

Military Literature Fest: Former Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa speaks on Balakot strike

Chandigarh, December 14

The airstrike launched on terrorist camps at Balakot deep inside Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir in February sent the message across that “if you mess with us, will get you no matter where you are” and there would be heavy costs, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa (retd), who was then Air Chief, said.

"The biggest lesson from the Balakot operation was that in a limited area and limited period conflict, technology matters" he said. “Our message was for the Pakistani armed forces, the JeM and ISI and not for the Pakistani people,” he said.

Countering the Pakistani narrative that the IAF could do no damage and the strikes were declared successful to cater to the domestic audience, Dhanoa said the radar data, launch of a search and rescue operation by Pakistan, electronic signatures and other evidence showed that Pakistan had lost an F-16. "They have nothing to back their claim that they shot down a Su-30 though we lost a MiG-21 that crossed over in exuberance.”

Wg Cdr Sameer Joshi (retd), a fighter pilot who served in the Kargil conflict, and former Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Air Command, Air Marshal KK Nowhar, also spoke. — TNS

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