New Delhi: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday paid his tribute to CRPF personnel, who lost their lives in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama on February 14 last year, when their convoy was targeted by a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) outfit.
“Remembering the fallen CRPF personnel who were martyred during the dastardly attack in Pulwama (Jammu and Kashmir) on this day in 2019. India will never forget their sacrifice,” Singh tweeted.
He said that the entire country stands united against terrorism and “everyone is committed to continue fight against this menace”.
At least 40 CRPF jawans were killed after the convoy of 78 buses, in which around 2,500 personnel were travelling from Jammu to Srinagar, came under attack.
Following the dastardly attack, India had launched extensive diplomatic efforts to get JeM chief Masood Azhar designated as a global terrorist, which finally became a reality on May 1 last year when China lifted its technical hold on a proposal introduced by the US, the UK, and France in the 1267 Committee of the UN Security Council.
Around 12 days after the terror attack, in the wee hours of February 26, Indian Air Force (IAF) jets bombed the JeM camp in Balakot, in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
A day later on February 27, IAF foiled an attempt by Pakistan Air Force (PAF) to strike at military installations in Jammu and Kashmir. In the aerial skirmish, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman piloting a MiG-21 Bison aircraft shot down a much-advanced F-16 of PAF.
However, his aircraft was also hit and upon ejection, his parachute landed in PoK, where he was taken captive by the Pakistani Army.
Under international pressure, Pakistan released the IAF pilot two days later, who returned to his country to a hero’s welcome.