It’s not Kargil-like in Keran: Army Chief

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New Delhi, October 4:  As Indian troops fought around 40 terrorists who infiltrated into the Keran sector of Jammu and Kashmir from across the border, Army Chief General Bikram Singh said on Friday that they would be flushed out soon and denied that a Kargil-like situation had developed there.

The terrorists had not occupied any Indian village along the Line of Control, and it was “an infiltration attempt by 30 to 40 terrorists,” he told journalists on the sidelines of a function here, even as the Army exchanged fire with the terrorists for the 11th day.

Gen. Singh said the militants attempted to infiltrate into four or five places, and the security forces had information about their bid. “They have been stopped, prevented. Some of them have been neutralised. Operations are on to flush them out. It is a matter of time.”

Asked whether terrorists, had occupied any Indian village, he said nothing like that had happened, and no Army post or bunker was occupied by the terrorists or their suspected Pakistan Army accomplices. “We are dominating them from all sides, and the terrorists are holed up. It is a broken ground. It is difficult, treacherous terrain. They are stuck in that, and we will take them on. It is a question of time.”

Pointing out that Pakistani Army posts were located nearby, Gen. Singh said such operations took time to complete.

Asked about the situation, Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne agreed with Gen. Singh that it was a “localised” operation, which would be completed soon. “We all monitor such incidents. If the Army asks for any assistance, we are there. There is no need to become hyper.”

As part of the plan to build military infrastructure along the border with China, the IAF planned to develop a fighter aircraft base at Nyoma in Ladakh, he said at his annual press conference. The IAF was also upgrading seven airfields for day-and-night operations in the Northeast. “The cost of developing the Nyoma airbase will be Rs.2,173 crore, and it will take 4-5 years to develop it.”

The IAF recently set a record, landing its C-130J Special Operations aircraft in the Daulat Beg Oldie sector, located over 16,000 feet, close to the Depsang plains where Chinese troops had infiltrated in April.

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