Condemning the attack on the Indian Air Force Base in Pathankot, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar on Saturday pointed out that friendship and terror cannot go hand in hand.
“We condemn the attack. Our Air Force needs a salute for fighting them off immediately. How they entered the place needs to be investigated. I think our Home Minister has rightly said that India will give back a befitting reply. Congress has tried to politicise the matter. We are certain that friendship and terror cannot go together,” Javadekar told ANI.
Echoing similar sentiments, Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office, Jitendra Singh, said India’s forces were efficient in combating terrorists, but such situations and eventualities needed to be monitored and prevented more efficiently.
“It is not right to talk on these kinds of issues, as it is related to security. The concerned agencies have taken cognizance. Elements who cannot stand peace, carry out such attacks from time to time, but the peace process has a strength of its own,” Singh said.
Early this morning, around five militants dressed in army fatigues opened fire near the Pathankot Air Force station. The Pathankot National Security Guard team and the Garud Commando Force were roped in to engage the terrorists in a gun battle that began shortly after 3 a.m. with terrorists in the non-operational area of the base.
At the time of the filing of this report, four of the five militants have been killed. There is a heavy deployment of security in and around the air force base. A terror alert has also been issued for most parts of northern India, including national capital New Delhi.
It is also being reported that National Security Advisor Ajit Doval has briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the situation in Pathankot, though this is yet to be formally confirmed.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar is also expected to chair a high-level security meeting that will include the three service chiefs and heads of various key security and intelligence agencies to review the overall security situation and to assess the situation on ground.