‘Militants were heavily armed, began spraying us with bullets’

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Pathankot
  • Updated: Jan 04, 2016 09:56 IST
An Indian Air Force soldier takes up position outside Air force base in Pathankot. (Sameer Sehgal/HT Photo)

How many militants were involved in the attack on the Pathankot Air Force base? Did the authorities jump into action as soon as the assault started?

Even as militants continue to pound the Air Force base even 40 hours after the incident began on Saturday, information has been hard to come by. But Defence Security Corps (DSC) jawan Karnail Singh, who was inside the base when it came under attack, was able to throw some much-needed light on the haze that seems to shroud the incident.

When asked to describe how it all started, Karnail – who was in Gurdaspur to mourn the death of his DSC colleagues Kulwant Singh and Fateh Singh – said: “The militants were heavily armed. They began spraying bullets as soon as they spotted our men near the mess.”

So, how many terrorists attacked the base? Even the DSC jawan didn’t seem to know. “I cannot tell the exact number of terrorists. But going by the way they were firing, it definitely looked like there were more than four.”

Karnail couldn’t precisely state the point from where the militants may have sneaked in, but he strongly believed it “must have been from the rear side”.

He denied suggestions that laxity may have made the establishment vulnerable to the militants, stating that the entire base was placed on high alert as soon as inputs about the likely attack came in.

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