MUMBAI: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Wednesday added a new dimension to the debate on surgical strikes, saying the few operations carried out under the UPA government’s watch along the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir border do not qualify for that tag.
The earlier operations, he asserted, were undertaken by border action teams at the local level “without the knowledge” of the government.“People who claim surgical strikes were conducted earlier might be referring to localised operations by BSF commanders. According to my knowledge as a Defence Minister, the government never took such a decision before,” Parrikar said. In contrast, the operation in the wee hours of September 29 was a surgical strike because the “decision was taken and conveyed” at the highest level and the army did the job well.
“The 127 crore people of this country and the armed forces deserve the credit for the surgical strikes,” Parrikar said while interacting with citizens here at a programme. “We in the government only take decisions. But, the government needs to be cheered for taking bold decisions,” he added.