NEW DELHI: Defence minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday slammed Pakistan for hampering the environment for bilateral talks between the two countries.
“The government of India has taken significant steps to ease the situation in the past... The fact that our Prime Minister dropped in at Lahore at a social function in Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s family, were all steps intended to ease the tension. But each one of these have been responded by, let us say, a Pathankot or a Uri or by mutilation of two of our soldiers,” Jaitley said at a press conference to mark three years of the Narendra Modi government.
The defence minister claimed that the Indian Army and the Border Security Force (BSF) are “dominating” the Line of Control (LoC) irrespective of whether the troublemakers are foreign insurgents or domestic.
He did admit that the situation is challenging in South Kashmir but the security environment in the rest of Jammu & Kashmir was normal. He cited the example of the peaceful two-day GST Council meeting held in Srinagar last month.
Last week, the Army had launched “punitive fire assaults” on Pakistani positions across the LoC, inflicting “some damage” days after the Pakistani Border Action Team (BAT) beheaded two Indian soldiers along the LoC.
To buttress its claims, the Army had also released a video which showed some structures in a forested area in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) crumbling after repeated shelling by the Indian troops.