Shiv Sena Needles BJP On Balakot Strike Toll


MUMBAI — The Shiv Sena on Tuesday said India’s citizens have the right to know about the casualties in the air strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) camp in Balakot, Pakistan, and that revealing such information would not lower the morale of the armed forces.

Taking a dig at senior ally BJP, the Shiv Sena, in an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamana, said discussions over the air strikes will linger on till the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and “burning issues” raised by the opposition before the February 14 Pulwama attack have now been side-stepped.

“Citizens of the country have the right to know what and how much harm has been caused to the enemy by the defence forces. We do not think the morale of our forces is being lowered by asking for it,” it said.

The India claimed its Air Force jets on February 26 pounded Jaish’s biggest training camp in Pakistan in retaliation for the outfit’s attack in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed.

While the Narendra Modi government has so far not given any official figure of the casualties in the air strikes, some opposition parties have been asking for proof of it.

Referring to it, the Shiv Sena editorial asked, “Where did the 300kg of RDX used in Pulwama attack come from? How many terrorists were killed in our strikes on terror camps? Discussions over these will happen till the last days of polls because before the Pulwama attack, inflation, unemployment and Rafale jet deal were the burning issues for the opposition.”

The Modi government’s “bomb” has fallen over these issues, it said in sarcastic remarks.

Issues like the construction of Ram temple, Article 370 and those raised by farmers have “turned to ashes”, said the party, which is an ally of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra.

It said questions over “the number of terrorists killed in the February 26 air strikes by the IAF were not only being asked by the opposition but by media of countries like the UK and the US as well.”



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