Pak claim of downing Su-30 in Feb 27 combat a ‘lie’: IAF officer

New Delhi: Pakistan’s claim of downing an Indian Su-30 fighter jet engaged in air combat on February 27 was “nothing but a lie”, says Squadron Leader Minty Agarwal who was watching the entire operations as the fighter controller on her computer.

She has become the first woman officer to be awarded the Yudh Sewa Medal for managing the Balakot aerial strikes and the Pakistan counter-attack of February 27.

Agarwal said Pakistan had made a false claim and asserted that one of the neighbouring country’s F-16 fighter jets was downed by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman instead.

“This is absolutely a false statement. This is propaganda of Pakistan. All Su-30s were accounted for. I am aware of it as I was monitoring the situation,” Agrawal told ANI here.

The IAF had said that all the Sukhoi-30 fighter jets engaged in the air combat with the Pakistan jets had returned to base safely.

Agarwal also said that she witnessed Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman shooting down a Pakistani F-16 fighter aircraft during the air combat.

“From the time Wing Commander Abhinandan became airborne, I was the one who was providing him with the air situation picture. I saw the fading of F-16 blip from my screen,” she told ANI here, adding that the downing took place in “a situation of intense battle”.

Agrawal became the first defence officer to get Yudh Seva Medal, which is awarded to recognize distinguished service of a high order during war, conflict or hostilities.

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