India complains against Pak Army's role
Within hours of the Indian Army ending its search operation for more militants in the Keran sector of north Kashmir, New Delhi lodged a strong protest with Islamabad, with top Army officials accusing the Pakistani Army of tacitly supporting militants just days after the prime ministers of the two countries smoked the peace pipe.
Director General of Military Operations (DGMO) Lt Gen Vinod Bhatia called up his Pakistani counterpart Maj Gen Amir Riaz to convey India's displeasure at the Pakistan Army’s alleged involvement in a series of recent militant strikes, including the Samba attack and the Keran encounter, in no uncertain terms. This is the first time the two DGMOs spoke since the audacious infiltration attempt by a group of 30-odd militants.
As the Pakistani official denied the charges, the heated exchange continued for several minutes, reliable sources told Deccan Herald.
The offices of the two DGMOs routinely talk on every Tuesday. Often, junior officers talk on behalf of them.
However, on Tuesday, Lt Gen Bhatia himself picked up the hotline and gave a piece of his mind to the Pakistani officer after the Indian Army killed eight militants and recovered 62 weapons, including AK-47s, rocket launchers and under-barrel grenade attachments.
When asked what transpired between the two DGMOs, Army officials said the contents of the discussion could not be divulged as it was classified in nature.
Following the infiltration bid, the planned meeting between the two Army DGMOs to discuss the modalities of maintaining peace and amity along the Line of Control (LoC) is unlikely to happen any time soon.
“Having known the existing deployment along the LoC, I am very clear that no terrorist can move without the knowledge of the Pakistani Army. We know very well that the fire which provides cover to infiltrators comes from Pakistani posts,” said Army chief Gen Bikram Singh. The eight bodies of militants the Army recovered are from the Gujjurtur area, 6 km south-west of Shalabato, and from Fateh Gali, 25 km south of Shalabato.
Located at an altitude of 9,000 ft, the entire area is jungle-covered.
But no bodies were recovered from Shalabato, despite the commanding officer of 15 Corps stating he had intercepts in which militants claimed at least 12 of them were killed. Army officials claimed militants might have been forced by their Pakistani handlers to take back the bodies to remove any evidence of Pakistani involvement.
The Army chief said commanders in northern command recovered from a militant a letter purportedly written by a Pakistani official.