Mantra of surgical strikes

INDIAN Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat on Monday repeated his last year claim of so-called surgical strikes across border saying it was a message to Pakistan. Talking to media, he also boasted that the strikes would be repeated if other side prompts, adding that apart from surgical strikes there were also other measures of counteraction.
It was on September 29 last year that India made claims about surgical strikes on this side of the Line of Control in Azad Kashmir but these claims were not only rejected by Pakistan and questioned by the international media but prompted demands from some political leaders in India as well to substantiate it with solid evidence which Indian Army could not so far. Irrespective of the false nature of the claims, the repeated warnings of Indian military and civilian leaders of surgical strikes and hot pursuit speak of the mindset in New Delhi and Pakistan needs to be ever vigilant to foil any misadventure. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi did well by including references to Indian designs against Pakistan in his speech to the UN General Assembly, sensitising the international community that any misadventure including the so-called cold start doctrine envisaging limited aggression against Pakistan would be met with a strong and matching response. This warning should not be taken by India lightly as Pakistan has demonstrated capability of thwarting Indian designs and the country could inflict even more harm on the enemy than it could on Pakistan. We have been emphasising in these columns that Pakistan should not deploy out-of-proportion troops on the western border at the cost of dangers to its security from the eastern border. It is time we re-deploy forces keeping in view new geo-strategic realities that pose serious threats to Pakistan. There are chances that in order to pressurise Pakistan, India might be prompted by some powers to embark on some mischief and our forces should be ever ready to respond in kind.

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