The press meet was held by the IAF chief at a time when there have been contradictory numbers from government over the casualty count of India’s air strikes on terror camps in Pakistan

Air Force focuses on target does not count casualties Air Chief Marshal BS DhanoaPTI
news Conflict Monday, March 04, 2019 - 16:28

The Indian Air Force only focuses on whether targets have been struck, and does not count the number of fatalities or injuries, said Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa during a press meet at Coimbatore on Monday. The press meet was held by the IAF chief at a time when there have been contradictory numbers from the government over the casualty count of India’s air strikes on terror camps in Pakistan last week. According to News 18 reports, soon after the attack, the BJP had claimed about 250 were killed in the terror strike.

Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa said that the number of casualties at the Jaish-e-Mohammad training camp would be released by the government. “The IAF is not in a position to clarify the number of casualties that has occurred during the terror strike. The government will provide information regarding the number of causalities. We don't count human casualties, we count what targets we have hit or not,” said Dhanoa, according to News18.

Responding to questions on why Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman was flying a MiG-21 Bison, an ageing aircraft, Dhanoa said that the aircraft had an improved weapons system. “It was used because it has been upgraded, has better radar, air-to-air missiles and better weapons system,” said Dhanoa. According to the report of The Hindu, Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa said that when there is an attack from adversary, all jets available would be used.

Dhanoa said that the IAF does not take chances when it comes to the medical fitness of the pilot and that Wing Commander Abhinandhan can fly a fighter jet if he is deemed fit. He added that Abhinandan would be given all required medical treatment. 

The IAF is also investigating the mid-air collision that occurred ahead of Bengaluru’s Aero Show on February 19 and a helicopter crash in Kashmir last week, Dhanoa told The Hindu.

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