Rajnath Singh to give statement in Parliament over inadvertently firing missile in Pak

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will make a statement in the Parliament on Tuesday over inadvertently firing a missile that landed in Pakistan.

The Defence Ministry had stated that an unarmed supersonic missile “accidently” took off from Sirsa and landed at a place 124 km within the Pakistani territory on last Wednesday.

Last Friday, the DefenceA Ministry “regretfully” explained it as “a technical malfunction”.

The ministry in a statement had said: “On March 9, 2022, in the course of a routine maintenance, a technical malfunction led to the accidental firing of a missile.”

The Indian government has taken a serious view of the matter and “ordered a high-level court of enquiry”.

“It is learnt that the missile landed in an area in Pakistan. While the incident is deeply regrettable, it is also a matter of relief that there has been no loss of life due to the accident,” said the ministry.

On the same day, Pakistan foreign office had summoned India’s charge d’affaires and lodged a protest over what it termed as unprovoked violation of its airspace.

In a statement, it warned New Delhi of “unpleasant consequences” over what it claimed was an Indian originated but unidentified high-altitude supersonic object that crashed in its territory.

In its statement, the foreign office urged India to take effective measures to avoid such violations in the future.

The missile was cruising at an altitude of 40,000 feet and endangered passenger flights in both Indian and Pakistani airspace, and also civilians and property on the ground, the Pakistan foreign office said.

Major General Babar Iftikhar, Director General of Pakistani armed forces’ Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), had said that at 18:43 hours on March 9, “a high-speed flying object was picked up inside Indian flying territory by Air Defence Operations Centre of the Pakistani Air Force. From its initial course the object suddenly maneuvered towards Pakistani territory and violated Pakistan’s airspace, ultimately falling near Mia Channu.”

Addressing a press conference on the incident, Iftikhar said that there were no human casualties.

“When it fell, it damaged some civilian property. Thankfully no loss or injury to human life was caused,” he said.

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