Monday, April 19, 2021
Home News Reports Balakot airstrikes first anniversary: The inside story of how 'Operation Bandar' unfolded

Balakot airstrikes first anniversary: The inside story of how ‘Operation Bandar’ unfolded

The message is loud and clear. India has the resolve and ability to take swift action against terror attacks. Next time it happens, we will hit them even harder," Kumar said.

On this day, last year, the Indian Air Force fighter jets carried out cross-border airstrikes to pulverise the Jaish-e-Muhammad training camp situated deep inside Pakistan, in Balakot. The attack, first of its kind on Pakistani soil, was authorised in response to the Pulwama attack by Jaish-e-Muhammad on February 14, 2019, which claimed 40 CRPF personnel’s lives.

Shortly after an indoctrinated terrorist rammed an explosive-laden car into one of the vehicles of the CRPF convoy, killing 40 CRPF soldiers, the Indian Prime Minister had summoned a CCS meeting to take stock of the situation and discuss the various retaliatory options at India’s disposal. In an ANI report, Air Marshal C Hari Kumar has revealed how the events had unfolded at that time.

According to Air Marshal C Hari Kumar, who headed the IAF’s western command during the operation last year, on 15th February, a day after the ghastly terror attack, the Chief of Air Staff at the Western Command was briefed as to what are the options available.

“At that stage, we had a specific set of targets to be addressed. However, on February 18, we got a very strong and credible intelligence input on Balakot which was conveyed to the leadership. The intelligence input provided by Research& Analysis Wing was very accurate and specific. It not only had coordinates that are most important for carrying out such attacks but it also provided with excellent imagery and reliable ground shots of the target,” Kumar said to ANI.

Considering the distance involved, the Air Force was selected for the operation after zeroing in on the targets, he added. Further due-diligence was done to ascertain the designated mean point in the impact of those targets. Regarding the question as to how Mirage 2000 were finalised for the operation, Kumar said, “Looking at the geographic location of Balakot, which is 50 km inside Pakistan, Mirage 2000 was the only option that carried SPICE and Crystal Maze which gave us a significantly larger stand-off.”.

When sought details about how the operation came to be called as “Bandar”, Kumar recalled that the word ‘Bandar” was a codeword to relay the success of the mission. “I distinctly remember. It was on the 25th of February. My farewell was going on at a large banquet when the Air Chief came and took me along the lawn to reconfirm if all the preparations are done. During that time, he told me that when the operation is over and our men have safely landed back, just give me a call. If you say “Bandar”, I will presume everything has gone smoothly and the operation is a success,” Kumar said.

As per the Operation, Mirages got airborne from Gwalior airbase and travelled north towards the Bareilly sector. From Bareilly, they travelled further north, taking advantage of the mountainous terrain, and continued their flight upwards of Srinagar in the direction of Balakot.

Read: 10 remarkable details of the Indian air strike over Balakot terror camp

Talking about minutes before the final moments, Kumar said, “The first bomb impact was 0328. At 0305, PAF scrambled 2 F-16s at the Indian Mirages. However, to thwart their attempts to foil the operation, a decoy was set as we launched four Jaguars from Ambala and two Su-30 Combat Air Patrols(CAPs) at high speed towards Bhawalpur, another major location for JeM training camp. The decoy was successful as two F-16s broke the pattern and flew at high speed southwards. The Indian fleet of aircraft attacked and destroyed the designated targets and landed back at around 0400.”

Kumar also spoke about the possible number of terrorists eliminated in the operation and the consequences of the airstrikes carried out on the enemy soil. “We had an intelligence input about a great number of people present at the Jaish’s facility in Balakot. I think maybe 500 to 600 terrorists were eliminated in the operation. The operation marks a paradigm shift in India’s approach in dealing with cross-border terrorism. We have conveyed them in the strongest term that a terrorist attack on Indian soil is no longer acceptable and will exact punitive measures. Since the Balakot airstrikes, there have been no terror attacks throughout the year. The message is loud and clear. India has the resolve and ability to take swift action against terror attacks. Next time it happens, we will hit them even harder,” Kumar said.

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

Related Articles

Trending now

Pakistan riots: Imran Khan government fails to control riots that erupted from protests against France

TLP is getting support in Pakistan from all sections, including armed police and military personnel.

Delhi and Maharashtra governments leave migrant workers in the lurch as they return to their native places in the wake of second wave of...

Migrant labourers in Delhi are leaving the city for their native places as Arvind Kejriwal announced a strict 6-day curfew to control the spread of the coronavirus

Pro-AAP vlogger Dhruv Rathee spreads fake news about only BJP campaigning for Bengal elections, gives clean chit to TMC, Left, and Congress

While TMC, Congress and the Left are all continuing with rallies and crowded election campaigns, Dhruv Rathee made a ranting Facebook post blaming only the BJP. He did not share it on Twitter.

Understanding the hate factory: How Rohan Joshi and his hateful post against Hindus gives us an insight into the ‘liberal’ mind

Comedian Rohan Joshi tells Bhakts, "I have nothing but contempt for them and nit a shred of empathy" as he mocks Coronavirus deaths

Maharashtra Remdesivir ruckus: Saket Gokhale brazens his lies by filing complaint against Fadnavis, BJP returns favour. Details

A complaint has been filed against Saket Gokhale by a BJP member in which the complainant has accused the Congress supporter of lying and waging a war against the state in the midst of a pandemic

‘Why are you trying to please Kaafirs?’: Viral videos show revolt within Pakistan Army, personnel attack Imran Khan for letting TLP rioters die

Pakistani army personnel were earlier seen raising Islamist slogans along with the members of the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP).

Recently Popular

Filmmaker Hansal Mehta challenges for free flight tickets to Pakistan but goes into hiding after Twitter user provides it. Read what happened

Hansal Mehta's flight to Pakistan via Dubai is scheduled for 20th April, 2021. We shall keep you posted if Mehta goes to Pakistan or will he register his name in long list of paper tigers.

Video claiming a dargah was recently constructed on footpath along Sabarmati riverfront road in Ahmedabad goes viral: Details

Netizens have shared a video claiming that a dargah had mysteriously sprung up along the Sabarmati riverfront in Ahmedabad

World Hindu Foundation asks Justice Rohinton Nariman to take back his ‘mischievous’ comments on Vedas

The World Hindu Foundation has expressed outrage at recent comments on Hinduism made by Justice Rohinton Nariman.

Karan Johar’s Dharma Production fires Kartik Aryan, not to work with him again: Here is what happened

Dharma Productions said it was pushed to the wall by “unprofessional behaviour” of Kartik Aryan during shooting of Dostana 2

250 ventilators sent by central govt lied unutilized in the state of Punjab amid the second wave of coronavirus

250 ventilators sent by the central government to Punjab for use in government hospitals were lying unused till late March.

When ‘comedians’ double up as doctors and believe ‘Bhakts’ deserve the misery as Chinese coronavirus rages

You will never see them questioning how many mosques have opened up their gates as medical facilities. Because, everyone likes to keep their heads.
- Advertisement -

 

Connect with us

254,077FansLike
530,479FollowersFollow
24,200SubscribersSubscribe