Defence Expert Lt. General BS Jaiswal on February 14, spoke about the importance of martyrdom and paid his respects to the Pulwama martyrs. Speaking to the Republic TV, Jaiswal said, "Martyrdom is indeed very sacred. And in case, we do not give our respect and pay our tributes to martyrdom, I think we are not honouring our brave. I think it is a very good gesture that today, the country has rallied and recognised the martyrdom for our people and we are praying for their well-being and their heavenly abode and salute their martyrdom."
Speaking further about paying respects to the martyrs, Lt General Jaiswal said, "It is extremely important that I think, that should be the norm for any martyr, not only Pulwama but any martyr."
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday in a shameful effort to play politics over the matter posed three questions targeting the Modi government. In spite of Pakistan-based JeM claiming responsibility to the attack, Gandhi took to Twitter and questioned 'who benefitted the most?' Moreover, he enquired what the outcome of the investigation into the attack and asked who was held responsible for the security lapses.
Today as we remember our 40 CRPF martyrs in the #PulwamaAttack , let us ask:— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) February 14, 2020
1. Who benefitted the most from the attack?
2. What is the outcome of the inquiry into the attack?
3. Who in the BJP Govt has yet been held accountable for the security lapses that allowed the attack? pic.twitter.com/KZLbdOkLK5
Reacting to this, the Defence Expert said, "I will not get into the opposition's slugfest or whatever it is. I am not political. I am a Fauji and I will remain a Fauji. And I give my tributes to anyone who has laid down his life in the line of duty. For him, my salutations will always be there."
He added, "And after all, the country should realize that these are the men who are laying down their lives and they are risking their lives every day. And if we do not appreciate these people, I think it is a very sad story."
On February 14, 2019, a convoy of vehicles carrying security personnel on the Jammu Srinagar National Highway was attacked by a vehicle-borne suicide bomber at Lethpora (near Awantipora) in the Pulwama district in Jammu and Kashmir. The attack had resulted in the deaths of 40 CRPF personnel and the attacker. The Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) had claimed the responsibility for the attack.
Twelve days after the attack, the India Air Force (IAF) hit back and bombed the largest JeM terror base in Pakistan's Balakot across the LoC with precision airstrikes- called the Balakot Air Strike. In retaliation, Pakistan attempted to enter the Indian airspace and engaged in a dogfight, which had led to Army's pilot Wung Commander Abhinandan Varthaman capture. However, he was later released.