Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday criticised the Opposition for raising questions about the number of terrorists killed in the Indian Air Force’s air strikes in Pakistan on February 26, PTI reported. “Should our Air Force go and count the bodies after the attack – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5...?” he asked. “What is this joke?”
The home minister said the government agency National Technical Research Organisation had confirmed the presence of 300 active cellphones in the area that the Indian Air Force targeted in Pakistan.
“Some leaders of the other political parties are asking how many terrorists were killed in the IAF strike,” Singh said at a rally in Assam’s Dhubri. “Today or tomorrow, it will be known. Pakistan and their leaders know in their heart how many were killed.”
The air strikes on a Jaish-e-Mohammad camp in Pakistan’s Balakot on February 26 were carried out in response to a terrorist attack on a Central Reserve Police Force convoy in Kashmir’s Pulwama on February 14, which killed 40 soldiers.
Earlier on Tuesday, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman refused to provide a figure for the number of terrorists killed. Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa on Monday said that the Indian Air Force is not in a position to count the number of casualties in the cross-border strikes. He said the government would provide such a number. On Sunday, BJP chief Amit Shah claimed that over 250 terrorists were killed in the attacks.
Union Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh, on Tuesday, said that Shah’s statement was just an estimate.