Wing Commander Abhinandan to return: ‘Pilot project over, real one still to be done’, says PM Modi

By: | Published: March 1, 2019 6:06 AM

As the audience applauded, the Prime Minister continued: “Now the real one has to be done. Earlier one was a practice. And the real one is to actually give a standing ovation to today’s award winners. We will give a standing ovation.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at an awards event in New Delhi on Thursday

In remarks interpreted as a reference to the IAF raid on a terror camp inside Pakistan and the return on Friday of captured Indian pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said a “pilot project” just got over and the “real one” was still to be done because the earlier exercise was a “practice”.

He was speaking at the award ceremony for the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology in New Delhi.

The PM made these remarks shortly after Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan told his country’s parliament that Pakistan would be releasing the Indian pilot Friday — Modi told the gathering of scientists: “You spend your life in laboratories. You have a tradition of first doing a pilot project. It is later scaled up. So recently a pilot project happened (pilot project pura ho gaya).”

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As the audience applauded, the Prime Minister continued: “Now the real one has to be done. Earlier one was a practice. And the real one is to actually give a standing ovation to today’s award winners. We will give a standing ovation.”

These remarks by the PM were also tweeted by the BJP.

Earlier in the day, interacting with BJP workers across the country via video conference, Modi said it is necessary to ensure that nothing is done to dent the morale of the security forces. He said India will fight, live, work and win as one and nobody can create hurdles in its march towards development. “The enemy is trying to destabilise us, carry out terror strikes… they want to stop our growth… we will fight, live work and win as one,” he said.

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