New Delhi: India on Wednesday shot down a Pakistani F-16 jet that crossed the LoC after violating the Indian air space in retaliatory fire 3km within Pakistan territory in Lam valley, Nowshera sector. Indian Air Force took the action moments after Pakistani jets violated Indian airspace and dropped bombs.
Top defence and security officials have briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the latest developments, including aerial confrontation in which one Pakistani jet and an IAF MiG 21 were shot down.
Meanwhile, Islamabad launching retaliatory strikes claimed it has arrested an Indian pilot in its territory. Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan his address to his nation later in the day cautioned against any "miscalculation" in case of an escalation between the two nuclear-armed countries and offered to defuse tensions through talks.
Earlier in the day, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM), saying flight operations at the airports in Srinagar, Jammu, Leh, Pathankot, Amritsar, Shimla, Kangra, Kullu Manali and Pithoragarh will remain shut from February 27 to May 27. But hours later, DGCA confirmed that operations at the India's nine airports, have resumed as of now.
In a befitting response to Pakistan over their failure to control terrorism on home-soil, India bombed and destroyed Jaish-e-Mohammed's (JeM) biggest training camp in Balakot in Pakistan's restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, nearly 80-km from the Line of Control (LoC) early Tuesday. The pre-dawn operation eliminated a "very large number" of terrorists, trainers and senior commanders.
JeM chief Maulana Masood Azhar later confirmed that the air strikes did take place at the terror camp at Balakot but denied any damage to his cadre or family members.
India's strike came 11 days after a JeM suicide bomber killed at least 40 CRPF troopers in the Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on February 14. This is the first time that the IAF crossed into Pakistan after the 1971 war.
With Agency Inputs