Jammu/Srinagar: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said that terrorists who attacked Army camp in Jammu and Kashmir enjoyed some local support and had handlers across the border.
“The counter-terrorist operation in Sunjuwan was called off today (Monday) at 10.30, however, the sanitisation operation is on. Six fatal casualties, including a civilian, were cost by the terrorists. Three terrorists have been eliminated. There were reports of four terrorists. The fourth terrorist must have been a guide and may not have entered the camp area,” she said.
The Defence Minister added, “Terrorists belonged to Jaish-e-Mohammed, sponsored by Azhar Masood residing in Pakistan and deriving support from there in.”
“All the evidence collected have been compiled. Definitely, they will be given to Pakistan. Even after giving dossiers after dossiers Pakistan has not taken any action,” she said.
“Giving the evidence to Pakistan will be a continuous process. It will have to be proved over and over again that they are responsible. Pakistan will have to pay for this misadventure. Intelligence inputs show that terrorists were controlled by their handlers from across the border. Pakistan is expanding the arch of terror to areas south of Pir Panjal and resorting to ceasefire violations to assist infiltration,” Sitharaman further said.
She also met those injured in the Sunjuwan Army camp attack at the Military Hospital in Jammu.
A group of heavily armed men struck the sprawling camp of the 36 brigade of the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry before dawn on February 10, 2018. Five Army men, including two Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs), martyred in the attack.
Earlier Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday pitched afresh for a dialogue between India and Pakistan to end the violence in the restive state.
“If Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti say hold talks with Pakistan, they are dubbed anti-national. There is no alternative (to resolve the issue) except by holding talks,” she told the state Assembly in Jammu on the concluding day of the budget session.
“If we (the Kashmiris) don’t talk about it (dialogue), who will? Not a Bihari, not a Punjabi,” Mufti added. “Dialogue with Pakistan is necessary if we are to end bloodshed. I know I will be labelled anti-national by news anchors but that doesn’t matter. The people of J&K are suffering. We have to talk because war is not an option,” she later tweeted.
Mufti also met the Defence Minister and briefed about the security situation in the state.