An Indian Air Force Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft shot down a Pakistani drone in the Bikaner Nal sector near the international border in Rajasthan on Monday, ANI reported, quoting unidentified officials. Indian planes engaged with the drone and shot it down after it was detected by air defence radars.
The drone had entered Indian airspace to inspect the country’s defence positions in the Bikaner Nal sector, the news agency reported.
India Today reported, quoting officials, that the Pakistani aircraft violated Indian airspace around 11.30 am. Indian Air Force jets scrambled and engaged the aircraft using air-to-air missiles, the news network said, adding that the drone’s debris fell into a sand dune feature in Pakistan known as MW Toba.
India had shot down another Pakistani drone along the border in Gujarat’s Kutch on February 27.
The Indian Air Force had conducted strikes on Balakot in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on February 26, targeting a Jaish-e-Mohammad camp. The strikes were a response to a suicide bomb attack on February 14, in which 40 Central Reserve Police Force jawans were killed in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir. The extremist outfit had claimed responsibility for the attack.
In response, Pakistani F-16 jets violated the Line of Control on February 27, and engaged in combat with Indian aircraft. The Pakistani jets shot down a MiG-21 Bison plane and captured a pilot, Abhinandan Varthaman, who was returned to India on Friday. India shot down a Pakistani F-16, which landed in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.