India media reports reveal that the newly appointed Indian Air Force (IAF) Chief, Air Marshal Rakesh Kumar Bhadauria has stated that the Indian Air Force was prepared during the foozled Balakot airstrike and “will be prepared next time”.
These aggressive remarks were made by Bhadauria as he assumed charge of the IAF in the wake of Air Marshal BS Dhanoa’s retirement. Dhanoa, the former IAF Chief directed the botched Balakot airstrike in February in a bid to “teach Pakistan a lesson” and later, caused New Delhi unprecedented embarrassment after a MiG-21 Bison fighter aircraft was shot down by the Pakistan Air Force (PAF).
#Rafale jets will greatly enhance the capabilities of the #IndianAirForce (IAF) and will give the IAF an edge over Pakistan and China, new IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal #RKSBhadauria said on Monday.https://t.co/3YOl1eldHM
— ET Defence (@ETDefence) September 30, 2019
IAF Chief’s Aggressive Remarks
Addressing the press after assuming charge as the new IAF Chief, Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria said, as cited by India Today, “We were prepared then, we will be prepared next time. We will be ready to face any challenge, any threat.”
In response to a question of Pakistan reactivating the alleged Jaish-e-Mohammad “terror camps that were destroyed” in the botched Balakot airstrikes in February, the newly appointed IAF Chief alleged, “We are aware of the reports and we will take the necessary action as and when required.”
Pakistan does not wish confrontation but will give a befitting response in case of any misadventure or false flag activity.
He said that the former IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa was “instrumental in planning and executing a successful strike against the terrorist camp near Balakot”. The new IAF Chief believes that the IAF’s acquisition of the “Rafale fighter jets will be a game-changer for the Air Force”, and would India an “edge over Pakistan and China.”
He said, “My first priority is the modernization and indigenous capability in view of all budget constraints. Rafale will be a game-changer in our operational capability. It will give India an edge over Pakistan and China.”
Responding to a question on Prime Minister Imran Khan’s warning to the international community over the threat of a possible nuclear confrontation, Bhadauria said, “That is their understanding of nuclear aspects. We have our own understanding, our own analysis. We will be ready to face any challenge.”
The newly appointed IAF Chief Air Marshal Bhadauria was commissioned as a fighter pilot of the IAF in 1980, and he has completed 39 years of service, during which he was appointed on various command, staff and instructional positions.
“500 Militants in Balakot Terror Camp”
Earlier in September, the Indian Army Chief Bipin Rawat had been reprimanded by Pakistan over his irresponsible statement. He had alleged that India has “reports that a terror camp in Balakot has been reactivated and 500 militants were waiting to infiltrate India.”
Pakistan had rejected these belligerent remarks, and the Acting Foreign Secretary, Moazzam Ahmad Khan, had briefed the resident Ambassadors of the P-5 countries over the “intensified anti-Pakistan propaganda emanating from India” in Islamabad.
A press release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated in this regard, “Referring to the intensified, concerted Indian campaign against Pakistan, especially in the last few days, he stressed upon the aggressive, belligerent statements emanating from India, especially the Indian military, including, baseless, unsubstantiated allegations of “terrorist camps.”
The press statement continued, “Senior Indian military commanders have been giving provocative statements about the presence of so-called “terrorists planning to infiltrate India” and activation of “terrorist camps” in Manshera, Rawalakot, and Muzaffarabad in AJK. Similar venomous rhetoric against Pakistan continues on Indian media.”
India Building Ground for False Flag Attack
Pakistan strongly rejected these “baseless, unfounded allegations” and maintained that such remarks are being used as a pretext to “build the ground to preemptively justify any Indian misadventure/ false flag operation by Indian armed forces along the LOC or elsewhere.”
The press release stated, “These Indian statements signify their desperate attempts to divert the attention of the international community from the humanitarian nightmare in IoJ&K where Indian atrocities, including a curfew and communications blockade, continue for more than 50 days.”
“Indian statements only vitiate an already tense environment and are a threat to regional peace and stability. Pakistan does not wish confrontation but will give a befitting response in case of any misadventure or false flag activity.”
Pakistan’s Imran Khan will have a face-off with India’s Narendra Modi at the UNGA over Kashmir. We take a look at the history of Kashmir at the UN, which is the oldest dispute on its agenda pic.twitter.com/zAPl2aVCql
— TRT World (@trtworld) September 27, 2019
Pakistan called upon the P5 countries to ask New Delhi to corroborate its “fallacious claims” about the presence of these alleged “terror camps”. MoFA stated that Pakistan is willing to provide full cooperation to any country or organization seeking to visit any of the locations of these alleged “terrorist camps.”
The press release stated, “Pakistan is ready to provide full cooperation to delegates from P5 countries or diplomats from any other country who wish to visit any of the alleged locations to see for themselves that such Indian allegations are totally baseless and a mere rhetoric, to mislead both the international community, as well as Indian domestic audience.”