India reserves ‘right to retaliate’, warns Indian army chief


Talking tough ahead of the proposed India-Pakistan flag meeting in Jammu and Kashmir on Monday, Indian Army chief General Bikram Singh claimed the killing of two Indian jawans by Pakistani troops was a pre-planned act. “Such an operation requires planning, detailed reconnaissance,” he told reporters. “The killing if Indian jawans by Pakistani troops was gruesome and unpardonable act,” General Bikram Singh said, adding that beheading the soldier was unacceptable. “This incident has had strategic nuances, beheading our soldiers is not acceptable. The act was against ethics and principles of rules of engagement,” General Singh said. He added that India will register a strong protest at the flag meeting of the two countries. The army chief also clarified that no operation at LoC was done by the Indian Army on January 6. “Indian commanders on LoC are doing a great job,” General Bikram Singh said. He also said that the Indian Army would fully back the actions of commanders at the Line of Control. General Singh said they had the right to retaliate. “I expect all my commanders at the Line of Control to be both aggressive and offensive in the face of provocation and fire,” he maintained. “India reserves its right to retaliate against Pakistan at time and place of its choice. We won’t remain passive when attacked,” the army chief said. “India’s response to Pakistani firing at its posts in LoC in J&K is measured and perfect,” General Bikram Singh said. It is learnt that army chief General Bikram Singh has told northern army commander Lt Gen KT Parnaik that the force reserved its right to retaliate against Pakistan.

Hold your fire, Pakistan tells India

Pakistan demanded India to abide by the ceasefire agreement between the two countries with regards to Kashmir at a brigadier-level flag meeting between Pakistan and Indian military authorities to discuss the latest situation on the Line of Control (LoC) on Monday at Chakan-Da-Bagh in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan lodged a strong protest with the Indian side over violations of LoC. Pakistan also dismissed the Indian claim of ceasefire violations and asked the Indian side to uphold the ceasefire, according to sources. The Indian delegation at the flag meeting was led by the 10 Krishnaghati Brigade commander Brigadier TS Sandhu. During the meeting, the Pakistani commanders rejected the allegations levelled against them by their Indian counterparts. The Indian commanders accused their Pakistani counterparts of firing across the border, while the latter registered their own protest against Indian violations of the ceasefire at the LoC, sources said. The Pakistani army demanded that India must comply with the ceasefire agreement. However hours after the flag meeting, the Indian Army once again opened unprovoked firing at Battal sector on the LoC between Pakistan and India near Rawalakot, severely injuring one citizen. Media reports said the Indian Army opened unprovoked firing on Monday afternoon at Battal sector which stopped after Pakistan Rangers retaliated. The shooting and shelling continued for several minutes. The injured person was admitted to Combined Military Hospital for necessary treatment.