Manohar Parrikar: There were no surgical strikes in the past

Surgical Strike India Parrikar

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Wednesday said that there was no such Army operation in his knowledge, rejecting Congress’s claim of conducting surgical strikes across LoC during the UPA rule,

“I’m Defence Minister for two years, and from whatever I have learnt, there’s no surgical strike anytime earlier. What probably they are quoting are what is called as action taken by Border Action Teams.” He was  speaking at an event hosted by Forum for Integrated National Security in Mumbai.

The minister said all Indians, including “doubting Thomases”, and the Army deserved credit for the operation as it was done by the armed forces, and not by any political party. At the same time, he said “major share” of credit did go to the PM and government for decision-making and planning.He also made it clear that claims of having carried out such strikes earlier were wrong as such actions were undertaken by border action teams at local level “without the knowledge” of the government.

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Explaining the concept, the minister said such operations were carried out without official order or prior sanction of the government. “The earlier military actions were of low intensity and covert. These were done without the knowledge of anyone. Reports are subsequently given,” he said, underlining the action was taken by the local commander for settling scores.

Speaking about the September 29 surgical strike, the Defence minister said: “In this case a decision was taken and conveyed. Of course the execution was done superbly by the army they have done their job properly but there was a decision and which was announced by army itself – DGMO. If we had to take political credit for it, Defence Minister would have announced it. We have not announced it. It is Indian Armed Forces DGMO who announced the outcome and informed of the action taken by Indian military. The difference is that this is a covert operation which clearly indicates the intent of the Indian Army which was carried out.”