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No violation, it’s Pak ploy to divert attention: India

India has denied allegations that its fighter aircraft violated Pak airspace and has said that a 'misinformation campaign' has been launched to divert attention from the real issue.

| New Delhi |
December 14, 2008 9:51:53 am

India has denied allegations that its fighter aircraft violated Pakistani airspace on Saturday evening and has said that a “misinformation campaign” has been launched to divert attention from the real issue of the Mumbai attack.

The denial came after top Pakistan Government functionaries, including President Asif Ali Zardari, claimed that Indian Air Force (IAF) fighters crossed into Pakistani airspace at two different locations but tried to tone down the issue by saying that it was an “inadvertent” violation.

A Pakistan Air Force spokesperson said the Indian jets came in as much as 7 km and turned back only after their air defence network was activated. However, the IAF has categorically denied the allegation and has said no violation of any kind has taken place on the Pakistani border.

“There has not been any airspace violation by the IAF fighters into Pakistan,” the IAF spokesperson said. Sources said the Indian Director General of Military Operations (DGMO) received a call from his Pakistani counterpart on Saturday evening about the alleged breach but was told that no such incident had occurred.

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India has expressed its concern that such misinformation is being spread to divert attention from the Mumbai attacks. “Certain vested interests are spreading misinformation to digress from the main issues of the 26/11 attack,” a senior IAF officer said.

Last week, reports from Pakistan said its forces were put on alert after Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee made a threatening phone call. The incident was immediately denied by India with Mukherjee calling it a hoax and saying that it was a plan to divert attention from the Mumbai attack.

Days after that, Pakistani media went into hysterics saying that the Indian Air Force was on high alert and could be preparing to carrying out an aerial strike. This too was denied by India that clarified that no fresh alert had been sounded.

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