A day after the Uri terror attack in Kashmir which left 18 soldiers dead, Lt General Ranbir Singh, Director General of Military Operations (DGMO), said the Army has the desired capability to respond to acts of aggression and violence from Pakistan.
“We reserve the right to respond to any act of the adversary at a time and place of our choosing,” Lt General Singh said in a statement which suggests that the Indian response to Pakistan will not be knee-jerk.
The statement followed an hour-long meeting Monday afternoon in the Ministry of Defence between Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Army chief General Dalbir Singh and the DGMO. Sources said the meeting carried out a review of the situation in Uri, including the latest analysis about the likely routes of infiltration of the four terrorists who were killed Sunday morning.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who Sunday promised that the Uri attack will not go unpunished, held a meeting with his senior Cabinet colleagues, Doval and the Army chief to discuss the strategy ahead as the Centre weighed its options.
In the evening, the Prime Minister also met President Pranab Mukherjee, the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, who Sunday said that “India will not be cowed down” and “will thwart the evil designs of terrorists and their backers”.
Parrikar, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley attended the meeting chaired by the Prime Minister in which the the top security brass briefed the Prime Minister on the prevailing ground situation in Kashmir. Meanwhile, a team of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), led by an IG-rank officer, reached Uri to gather leads. NIA chief Sharad Kumar is likely to visit the attack site Tuesday.
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Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the entire world has realised that Pakistan is a nation which sponsors terrorism and gives shelter to terrorists. He said Pakistan has been using terrorism as a state policy against India. “But the Narendra Modi government assures the people of the country that in the battle of peace versus terrorism, terror and its masters will be destroyed,” he said.
Describing the Uri attack as an “act of cowardice”, Information and Broadcasting Minister M Venkaiah Naidu accused Pakistan of “aiding, funding and training terrorists” and called it a “rogue” nation. “It has become their state policy. It is a rogue nation as they are not abiding by the promise they made,” he said, adding that “Pakistan is exposed at the international level and all the countries in the world should come together to condemn the heinous act of Pakistan”.
Naidu said it is time to declare Pakistan as a terrorist nation and urged the world to come together to stop assistance to Pakistan. “The UN should take up this issue in a serious manner because terrorism is an enemy of humanity; it’s not against India alone, terrorist activities are happening in different parts of the globe. Pakistan has become an epicentre of terrorism. It is high time that UN should come forward to declare Pakistan a terrorist state,” he said, asserting that India will give a fitting reply to the Uri attack perpetrators.