The Pathankot airbase was attacked by 6 heavily armed militants carrying 50 kg of ammunition, 30 kg of grenades, 52 mm mortars, AK47’s and other assault weapons.
They entered India on 31st December, snatched the multi utility vehicle which belonged to a Punjab Police SP and on 2nd morning entered the air force station with the help of a looped rope against the boundary wall. They took cover under the elephant grass before they moved 400m and were stopped 700m short of the aircraft by GCF commandos on duty.
Barbed wires, trenches, mountains, rivulets, streams and what not. And even after all these measures, imagine, 6 people (read “terrorists”) illegally crossed an international high security border with approximately 100-120 kg weight! Certainly, it is no mean feat. Now while others might focus on how adverse the situation was, I choose to throw light on why was the situation adverse in the first place.
The first question is, How did these terrorists manage to break through the heavy security cover of the Border Security Force(BSF)? This infiltration like the numerous others indicate gaping loopholes in the security provisions at the IndoPak border.
Question two, the Indian Intelligence Agencies had warned of a possible attack as an attempt to hamper Indo-Pak dialogue, around the new year. Then why was not security beefed up and precautionary measures taken?
Next on, how did they acquire enough information regarding the proper aspect of the area? After stealthily sneaking into the Indian territory, the terrorists broke through another ring of security and entered the Pathankot Air Force Station and that my friends, without information from some kind of local or internal source is not possible. Moreover their apparent goal was to attack the Indian Air Force’s Fighter Planes and this implies their pre-existing knowledge about the where, what and how of things pointing towards an insider helping them.
Fourth, they aimed at destroying highly valued NATIONAL DEFENSE ASSETS which are protected by the Defence Security Corps (DSC). The DSC comprises retired personnel from the forces, so why is something which is so valuable being guarded by those who are physically not as efficient as a relatively young commanders would be? The DSC put their best foot forward and is not to blame, but agility and fiery physical capabilities are what is needed for the protection of such assets.
Now, if the NSG was pressed into service WHY WERE THEY NOT GIVEN FULL FREEDOM TO INDEPENDENTLY CONDUCT THE OPERATION? Rather, 6 forces one by one launched into action ill-informed, wrongly instructed and created a recipe for disaster which was topped with the icing of the fact, that the terrorists were in combat gear so you never knew if you were killing your own men!
It is being said that the operation was a failure. And yes it was! Because despite terrorists being killed, our side lost more lives than what it took. Because the Punjab Police, the Indian Army, Indian Air Force, NSG and GCF, all combined, couldn’t kill 6 terrorists in four days! It was a failure in terms of command because the Garud Commandos, the special force of the Indian Air Force which actually is especially trained for any kind of emergency was not pressed into service immediately and 160 odd NSG commandos were flown from Delhi to cover 24 Sq Km area.
Pakistan has tried helping us and has taken 8 years to solve the mystery of 26/11, they though acted rather quick this time getting hold of 3 Jaiesh-e-muhammed heads. But we shall not forget how time and again our soldiers have been the victims of the long coward practice of talking between India and Pakistan.
We lost our brave soldiers who willingly laid their lives to protect the nation, while we sat all comfy in our homes in this tough winter season. Legends like Subedar Major Fateh singh who in-spite of his 2 kids and wife at his base home, went out and killed one terrorist using the rifle of that very terrorist, will forever be remembered. Young men like Corporal Gursewak who got married 45 days ago still fought till his last breath.
Brave men are not just limited to these who have died in the span of last 3 days. Lets not forget the hundreds we lost in 1999 war. A soldier named Saurabh Kalia and his searching pantoon went out to check the LOC region before the war actually started. They were then captured and tortured by the Pakistani Army, with even a video of this on YouTube. The parents of Kalia have been asking the EMA and the PMO of the UPA and now the NDA for the justice but to no avail. (PLEASE DO SIGN THE PETITION ON CHANGE.ORG BY KALIA’S FATHER)
I recently tumbled upon a TV Debate on the Pathankot attack. Therein, Mr. Ashwini from Congress, who after hearing some harsh but valid comments by Major Gen(Retd) G.D Bakshi, said “How good we were in the 1971 war when we reached in Lahore, in the control command of then PM Indira Gandhi.” What it leads us to take a note on is, how the politicians take credit for what the Defense Forces do!
Finally, what I want to address is what the government has to do now. The Foreign Secretary talks held on 15th January have to be under a scanner, for it was this government that said “terror and talks cannot go hand in hand”. I appreciate the initiative by PM Modi as he went to Lahore, putting our image clean infront of the world. But enough for now we have tried, and failed too. A clear step has to be taken to prevent a breach of trust by the Government to the people.
Ultimately, acting as a dove and saying peace time and again is not anymore an option. We have to be a hawk and attack.
PM Modi are you listening?
About The Author
Student of Economic honors and journalism. A big time football fan. Loves live rock music, progressive rock. Travelling is the best and easiest way to find happiness
Earthly and Altruistic , sprinkled with tiny hints of never ending enthusiasm. This author is prone to being gibberish at times yet forces the world to absorb her never ending sagas.