New Delhi: Silencing those who demanded evidence to confirm the 2016 surgical strike, former Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag on Saturday said videos were not recorded to prove a point to anyone. In an interview to ANI, Suhag said “Definitely, we carry some means to facilitate our own operations and some of those also have recording devices. When we do an operation we don’t think of collecting proof. Instead of a camera, I would give my troops a machine gun. Our footage was not to prove anything to anybody as the details of operation should remain a secret.”
Suhag’s statement comes in response to allegations leveled by the Congress and other opposition parties, who have been accusing the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government of using the surgical strikes for political gains, and even questioned the authenticity of the strike. Soon after the strike, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam, had questioned the authenticity of the government’s claim of carrying out surgical strike against terror launch pads along the Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati had said that the surgical strike’s video which was released in public domain in June was nothing but an attempt by the BJP to distract people.
Suhag, who has been part of earlier surgical strikes conducted by the Indian Army, said that the 2016 operation cannot be compared with previous such operations. “Previously, you may call them strikes or raids but you cannot compare those with what we did in September 2016. Previous actions were actually local actions at unit or formation levels.
They were single point actions along the LoC and not the across the LoC, and they did not have political approval, whereas the surgical strike that we executed in September 2016 had political approval and they were not along the LoC but across the LoC in enemy territory,” he said adding that the strike was not at a single-point target but multi-point targets striking a large number of terror camps in one night. The former Army chief also lauded Prime Minister Modi for giving political approval to a bold decision.