New Delhi—Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit dismissed Indian claims of a ‘surgical strike’ across the Line of Control (LoC) on Wednesday, claiming that Islamabad would have ‘immediately retaliated’ if that had been the case.
India’s claim that it has conclusive video evidence of the surgical strikes seems ‘fabricated’, the diplomat said, adding that the sting operation conducted by one of India’s television channels showed a police superintendent at Mirpur, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, confirming the cross-border action by Indian Special Forces, over the telephone, Times of India reported.
“No such surgical strikes took place. There was only cross-border firing by Indian troops (on September 29), in which two Pakistan army soldiers were murdered. Pakistan responded to it immediately and proportionately,” Basit said in an interview to an Indian television channel.
“Had there been any surgical strike, Pakistan would have retaliated immediately…we did not need any reaction time. It seems to me the term surgical strike is being used very loosely in India… no Indian soldiers crossed the LoC… there was only cross-border firing,” he said.
Delving on the ongoing Kashmir issue, Basit said he “did not see desire” on India’s part to engage with Pakistan on the ‘core issue’ of Kashmir. “By blaming Pakistan or calling it a terrorist state (after the terror attack on the Indian Army’s Uri camp), you are closing all doors for cooperation,” he said.
Terming the postponement of the Saarc summit as “a huge setback and loss for all countries”, the high commissioner said, “We are confident that Pakistan will hold the Saarc summit next year, if not later this year.”