Surgical strikes video given to PMO (Roundup)

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New Delhi, Oct 5 (IANS) As the demand for sharing evidence of the surgical strikes grew louder, Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Gangaram Ahir on Wednesday said the footage has already been handed over to the Prime Minister’s Office by the Army.

The Minister said a call on making the video public rests with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“The video footage has been handed over to the government by the Army,” Ahir told IANS on phone from Mumbai.

Asked if the government planned to share the video, he said: “No such decision has been taken yet, a call can only be taken by the Prime Minister.”

“A nation has its own policies and one needs to practise restraint. People like Sanjay Nirupam and Arvind Kejriwal listen to Pakistan. The DGMO did the briefing and everyone in India believes it,” the Minister said.

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Meanwhile, a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), chaired by Prime Minister Modi, was held on Wednesday during which the situation along the Line of Control was reviewed.

Officials from the Defence Ministry, meanwhile, said there were no discussions on releasing the video.

The officials did not specify if a final stand on the issue has been taken.

Former Army Chief General J.J. Singh (retd), meanwhile, said sharing a footage will not be in national interest.

“I want to tell it loud and clear… these are secret and discreet operations which are supposed to be executed with precision, and our people are supposed to come back leaving as far as possible no evidence behind,” Singh told IANS.

“In today’s age, there is enough electronic equipment to track and record to tell what they have achieved, but it is not in national interest to put it in public domain. It has never been done in the past… in fact, it is not even supposed to be talked about. We must be mature enough as a country to be able to ensure that this kind of pressure is not put on the government or the army to produce videos,” the former Army chief told IANS.

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India has said a surgical strike was carried out during the night intervening September 28 and 29 to destroy terrorist launch pads across the LoC.

Pakistan has, however, claimed that no such attack took place.

In India, some political leaders, including Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam have demanded that the government release evidence of the strike.

The situation has been tense on the India-Pakistan border since the September 18 terror attack at an army camp in Uri town of Jammu and Kashmir which left 19 soldiers dead. India blamed Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad militant group for the attack.

Relations between the two neighbouring nations have deteriorated since the surgical strikes.

On Tuesday, Indian Army alleged that Pakistan troops opened unprovoked heavy firing in at least three places along the LoC and along the International Border in Akhnoor sector in Jammu.

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