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Saturday, Nov 16, 2019

‘Use common sense’: PM Modi lashes out at Oppn over Rafale attack

Addressing a rally in Gujarat, PM Narendra Modi said, “Please use common sense; what I said was if we had Rafale at the time of air strikes, than none of our fighter jets would have gone down and none of their’s saved.”

lok-sabha-elections Updated: Mar 04, 2019 17:07 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hands over the key of a house to a beneficiary of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, in Jamnagar, Gujarat, Monday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi hands over the key of a house to a beneficiary of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, in Jamnagar, Gujarat, Monday.(PTI)
         

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday hit out at the Opposition for questioning his statement that the presence of Rafale fighters would have given greater firepower to the Indian Air Force during the February 27 aerial engagement with Pakistan.

“Please use common sense; what I said was if we had Rafale at the time of air strikes, then none of our fighter jets would have gone down and none of theirs saved,” PM Modi said at a rally in Gujarat’s Jamnagar.

Modi said India would not sit quietly in the fight against terrorism and would do all to cure it from the root, which lies in Pakistan. “I said if Rafale was acquired in time it would have made a difference (during the February 27 dogfight), but they say Modi is questioning our air force strike,” he said.

Also read:‘Rafale to join IAF inventory in September,’ says IAF chief Dhanoa

India carried out airstrikes on terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad’s largest camp in Pakistan at Balakot, which came 12 days after the Pulwama bombing that killed 40 CRPF soldiers.

It was during the IAF’s operation to block the retaliatory strike by Pakistan air force that Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman’s MiG-21 Bison crashed seconds after he shot down the F-16 jet he had engaged in an aerial dogfight. The IAF officer was captured by Pakistan authorities. He returned to India on Friday after spending nearly 60 hours in Pakistan’s custody.

Lashing out at statements from opposition party leaders who demanded proof of the February 26 airstrike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot, Modi said his objective was to end terror while that of the opposition was to remove him.

“The root of terrorism disease is in neighbouring country, should we not cure the disease from its root,” he said.

“Even if mentors of those seeking to destroy India are outside, this country won’t sit quietly,” he said, addressing a gathering after inaugurating an annexe building of Guru Govind Singh hospital and various other development works here.