IAF chief on Balakot air strike: Unlike Pakistan, we achieved target

Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa at a seminar in New Delhi on Monday. (Express Photo)

Indian Air Force (IAF) chief, Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa, on Monday said that while the IAF achieved its military objective in Balakot on February 26, Pakistan did not achieve its target when it launched a riposte the next day, even though IAF lost an aircraft and one of its pilots was held captive.

ACM Dhanoa was speaking at a seminar organised as part of events marking the beginning of birth centenary celebrations of Marshal of Indian Air Force Arjan Singh, DFC.

ACM Dhanoa said, “Post-our strike on a terrorist training camp, to thwart an impending strike on our soil, PAF launched a riposte on February 27 against Indian military targets. Did they succeed in their objective, the answer is a clear ‘No’, as the attack was thwarted, while we achieved our objective in Balakot. This is the main argument.

“Yes, we lost an aircraft, MiG-21 Bison, and one of our pilot was held captive, but we got an aircraft too, which electronic signatures suggest was an F-16.”

“But to shift the narrative to this air combat from not being able to achieve your military objective is obfuscating the issue, like the statements given by the other side post-1965 and 1971,” he added.

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Referring to the strike on JeM terrorist camp by the IAF on February 26, he stated, “In the Balakot operations, we had technology…

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