Video footage of surgical strikes across the Line of Control (LoC) that took place on September 29, 2016, was aired on TV news channels on Wednesday.
The eight-minute-long video shows how the Special Forces of the Indian Army crossed over the LoC and destroyed the targets on the Pakistani side of the LoC.
The footage was reportedly shot from drones and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), and was shot on thermal imaging cameras used by the Army to monitor the operation.
Ever since the surgical strikes took place, the opposition had been raising questions and demanding proof of the military action.
The strike was conducted in 2016 when the Indian Army destroyed terrorist launch pads and killed many terrorists.
But is the video real? Watch VIDEO uploaded by YOUTUBE
Former Northern Army Commander Lt General DS Hooda (retd), who was in-charge of the surgical strikes, confirmed that ‘the video is real’.
“The operation was monitored from a control room in Udhampur, Headquarters of Indian Army’s strategic Northern Command,” said Lt General DS Hooda.
“One of the major challenges that the team that went across, faced was that the camps were located close to Pakistan Army posts,” Hooda added. He further said that the “feed was also going to Delhi”. “The whole operation lasted for six hours. The first target was hit at midnights and the last at about 6-6.15,” he added.
BUT IS THE SURGICAL STRIKE BEING POLITICIZED?
Following the release of the footage, several BJP leaders were quick to target the opposition.
Egg on the face of all those who doubted the surgical strike!!
— Priti Gandhi (@MrsGandhi) June 27, 2018
— RP Singh (@rpsinghkhalsa) June 27, 2018
When the govt announced that surgical strike has been done, we had supported it. In spite of surgical strike, there has been an increase in ceasefire violations by Pak. Now, it is for the govt to take a view of what surgical strike achieved: Pawan Verma, JD(U) pic.twitter.com/d0kcWYePIw
— ANI (@ANI) June 27, 2018
Meanwhile, several journalists and opposition leaders raised doubts about the timing of the footage’s release.
Have always felt BJP well ahead in 2019 game but recent events suggest all is not well; break up in J and K, excess hype on Emergency, Mandir politics, releasing surgical strike videos, Vadra tax notice, suggest urge to somehow change narrative from ‘vikaas’. Watch this space.
— Rajdeep Sardesai (@sardesairajdeep) June 27, 2018
There is nothing to be gained from debating whether the #SurgicalStrikes took place. What we should be objectively discussing is what the strikes changed on the ground.
— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) June 28, 2018
PM Modi looking for appreciation for Surgical Strike. Well here it is: super execution of clever plan. Now how about putting an end to Terror Strikes and Cease fire violations?
— Salman Khurshid (@salman7khurshid) June 27, 2018
Coincidence that all Channels claim Surgical Strike video exclusive first telecast? Planted for propaganda purpose because strategic moves need to remain confidential to retain surprise element agst enemy? Shabby politics or genuine transparency?
— Salman Khurshid (@salman7khurshid) June 27, 2018
Should Modi Govt/BJP be permitted to politicise the indomitable courage & sacrifice of our Armed Forces?
Should Modi Govt be not held accountable for stepmotherly treatment of our soldiers rather then take political credit for surgical strike?
AICC Media reaction at 9 AM today.
— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) June 27, 2018
A day after the video’s release, the Congress on Thursday accused the Modi government and the BJP of politicising the September 2016 surgical strikes to garner votes.
Addressing a press conference, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala charged that while on the one hand, the Modi government is seeking credit for the sacrifice and valour of the armed forces, on the other it has failed to provide direction and vision to deal with Pakistan.
“The Modi government is exploiting the slogan of ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’. Former prime ministers Manmohan Singh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee never used the Army’s valour to garner votes,” said Randeep Surjewala.
He also accused the government of meting out “step-motherly treatment” to the armed forces by not providing them with state-of-the-art equipment and slashing their budgetary allocation.
“As the Modi Government seeks to politicise the bravery of our soldiers and their determination in conducting the surgical strikes through ‘headline management’, the Nation demands answers,” Surjewala said.
“Is the Modi government endangering our ‘security infrastructure’? Is the Modi government guilty of putting the lives of our soldiers in danger? Is the Modi government using our ‘soldiers’ as ‘political fodder’ – using their sacrifice for vote garnering?,” he asked.
By making public the videos of the strikes has the government not somehow endangered lives of armed forces participating in them as also civilians living along the Line of Control, he asked
At Congress’ press conference, Surjewala said that the Indian Army has been making sacrifices for decades.