New Delhi: The 12 Indian Air Force Mirage 2000 jets dropped six 1,000 kg laser-guided bombs over two Jaish-e-Mohammed camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir’s (PoK) Chakothi, Muzaffarabad areas and pounded JeM’s biggest training camp in Balakot took off from their home-base of Gwalior, a report stated quoting a source.
The source further confirmed that fighter jets didn’t take off from the forward base just to maintain the ‘surprise’ factor. “ISI informants are active around forward IAF bases on the western front and promptly report unusual fighter activity,” a source was quoted as saying in a The Times of India report.
In a pre-dawn operation that lasted just 21 minutes, India mounted a massive offensive on Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) in Pakistan on Tuesday when its air force carried a ‘non-military pre-emptive air strike’ on three JeM camps, killing nearly 300 terrorists in the attack.
The IAF struck a five-star resort-style camp in Balakot on a hilltop forest that provided a dozen Mirage 2000 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force (IAF) with a “sitting duck target” and caught the terrorists in their sleep, sources said.
“Credible intelligence was received that JeM was attempting another suicide terror attack in various parts of the country, and the fidayeen jihadis were being trained for this purpose. In the face of imminent danger, a pre-emptive strike became absolutely necessary,” Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said while explaining the need for the pre-emptive strike.
The pre-emtive action against terror camps in Pakistan by India came nearly two weeks after the dastardly Pulwama terror attack in south Kashmir. Forty Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) jawans lost their lives as JeM terrorist Adil Ahmad Dar rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into a bus of the convoy of security personnel on February 14, nearly 30 km short of its destination – the Bakshi Stadium transit camp in Srinagar.
The CRPF convoy, consisting of 78 vehicles carrying 2,500 jawans, was attacked around 3.15 PM in Lethpora on Jammu to Srinagar highway.