Indian Army gives Modi green signal to release of video footage of surgical strikes: ToI

Times of India has reported that India's armed forces have given the green signal to the government to use video footage of the alleged “surgical strikes” in Azad Kashmir in any manner it sees fit to make New Delhi's case.

The final decision however, rests with the Prime Minister's Office (PMO).

According to TOI the army is keen that India releases evidence “to answer those alleging the strikes never happened”.

The recommendation was reportedly made in the wake of Pakistan's military establishment persistently claiming that the alleged September 29th pre-dawn strikes never happened.

Opposition politicians in India, including Aam Aadmi Party's Arvind Kejriwal and Congress' Sanjay Nirupam, have also asked for 'proof ' of the strikes.

The report further states that “top government officials speaking off record, have said that the decision on whether or not to release the strike footage will depend on the larger call on likely Pakistani response”.

TOI reports that the Indian army’s top strategists have said that it has ample evidence to show the cross-border strikes were highly effective. “There's video footage as well as photographs, shot by both ground troops and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that were deployed to monitor the operation”.

"There is no doubt at all that the strikes inflicted heavy damage. Proof is available with the government that clearly shows our troops engaging the targets effectively," a senior government official reportedly said.

The only public comment made by the armed forces, pertaining to the alleged strikes is the September 29th statement by the Director General of Military Operations, Lt. Gen Ranbir Singh.

However, according to TOI, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, who is the chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, said yesterday that comments are not being made as the situation is still "live".

"I think I should not say anything because it is very sensitive and things are still live," he said adding that the Indian Air Force holds the "power to punish" but any decision on using IAF in an offensive role has to be taken by the government.

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