PM Narendra Modi during an interview to ANI's Editor Smita Prakash on Tuesday spoke at length about the Surgical Strike detailing the entire sequence of events - from the time he came upon the idea till the successful operation was revealed to the world.
He also spoke about critics calling the revelation of the operation by the government as politicising of the event.
"I am myself of the opinion that there should be no politicisation of surgical strikes. There is no controversy about it. But after the surgical strike happened, no minister spoke about it... An Army officer apprised the nation of the operation. That information was given to Pakistan as well. And till Pakistan was told, the information was not given out even in India. But it is unfortunate for the country that the same day as the surgical strike, leaders of some parties raised doubts over the surgical strikes. It was necessary for Pakistan to speak like this to keep their morale intact. But what Pakistan was saying, was being said here too. To lend weight to their views, they were citing Pakistani line. Politicisation started from that point. You spoke rubbish about the Army. I feel that those who raised doubts over the Army action, were wrong and such politicisation should not have happened," he said.
He also said that it is the country's duty to praise the bravery of the Indian Army.
"It is the duty of the citizens and the government to hail the Army. Even the valour displayed by our armed forces in the 1962 war must be hailed as well as the courage in the surgical strikes. If we don’t hail the valour of those who stake their lives for the country, then who will? So praising the Army should not be considered as politicisation," he said.
PM Modi also revealed the event which led to the surgical strike and spoke about what went through his mind during the operation.
"When Uri happened, when our jawans were killed, burnt…That incident made bechain (anxious?) and there was rage within me. I had gone to Kerala and made a mention of this. Because I could not stop myself. But I am part of a democratic system and my personal rage, personal anger, personal bechaini should never be imposed on the system. But I kept talking to the Army why it happened. I realised that the anger in the Army was much more than mine. For the morale of the forces, they somehow wanted justice to be done with those who had been martyred. I asked them to draw up a plan, what was required. Think what can be done. Gave them a free hand. They planned.
"Twice the date had to be changed because I wanted full security for the operation. Finally, the operation was decided. I knew it was big risk. I never care about any political risk. The biggest consideration for me was the safety of our soldiers. No harm must come to them. They were willing to sacrifice their lives on our word. For that whatever was required was arranged for them.
"It was also decided that they should be trained. Special training was imparted, secrecy was maintained. The topography and obstacles were kept in consideration, worst case scenarios were considered... It was a learning experience for me as well...Then we decided the date. And who will be where, of the main team. It was decided that before dawn, our men must be back.
"I gave clear orders that whether you get success or failure, don’t think about that but come back before sunrise. Don’t fall for that moh (lure) and prolong it. Success or failure, come back before sunrise. Even if fail, come back. I won’t let my soldiers to die. Soldiers were specially picked.
"I was in live contact throughout, however, in the morning, information flow stopped, for an hour, I got anxious. Even one hour after sunrise. That time was extremely difficult for me. I couldn’t send a communication to them either…the period one hour after sun up was an extremely difficult time for me. My first priority was that my solider was alive.
"Then came the information that they have not reached back to our side of the border yet but two-three units have reached in safe zone. So dont’ worry. But I said I won’t be fine till the last man returns. This process took two hours after dawn. Then CCS meeting took place. Before that Pakistan was to be informed. The Pakistanis didn’t take our call at first. Indian press was told by 12 PM. For me, those moments were ... the way the operation was conducted, such precision, I got to know a new dimension of our forces. I salute them," he said.
On whether the surgical strikes helped deter terrorism or not, PM Modi said:
"I don’t consider it appropriate to talk about such things in the media. Whatever strategy is to be adopted, how to do, is ongoing at appropriate levels, has been happening. The 1965 war, war during partition… If after one war if we think Pakistan will behave, then this is a mistake. Pakistan will take some time to behave. Ek ladai se Pakistan sudhar jayega, yeh sochne mein bahut badi galti hogi. Pakistan ko sudarne mein abhi aur samay lagega."