The Indian Air Force on Tuesday delivered a massive blow to Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terror group after it destroyed one of its biggest terror launchpads in Pakistan's Balakot area twelve days after the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF jawans were martyred in a suicide bombing led by JeM terrorist. As per sources, over 300 terrorists, trainers and senior commanders of the JeM were eliminated in the air strike by IAF's Mirage 2000 which dropped 1,000 kgs payload on the terror launchapds.
However, in the aftermath of the air strike, a spooked Pakistan remained in denial mode and rejected India’s claim that it had conducted air strikes in Balakot and destroyed a Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camp.
Rattled Pakistan Army on Tuesday went on to allege that the IAF violated the LoC in Muzafarabad sector. Major General Asif Ghafoor, Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the media wing of the army, taking to Twitter wrote that "no casualties were reported".
However, sources have confirmed to Republic that over 300 terrorists who were undergoing training at Jaish-e-Mohammed, Lashkar-e-Toiba and Hizb-ul-Mujahideen terror camps at Balakote, Muzaffrabad and Chakothi in Pakistan were neutralised in IAF's air strike.
Furthermore, the Balakot-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camp destroyed by the Indian Air Force on Tuesday was located on the bank of the Kunhar river in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan and was also used by the Hizbul Mujahideen terror group. It was a 7 star camp with swimming pools and all other amenities which has now been brought down to dust.
In a panic after India destroyed JeM multiple terror bases killing hundreds of terrorist, flustered Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan called for an "emergency meeting".
Stunned by the air strike, Pakistan on Tuesday said it will give an "appropriate reply" to the Indian IAF action, which it described as "grave aggression".
"It is a grave aggression by India. We had told the world community that such a step could be taken by India," Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told state-owned Pakistan media, as per ANI report.
Rattled and on the backfoot, Pakistan's National Security Committee came out and said: "India has committed uncalled for aggression to which Pakistan shall respond at the time and place of its choosing."
India's Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale addressed a press briefing on Tuesday wherein he had confirmed about IAF's air strike on the JeM training bases. He further also confirmed that one of the terror facilities in Balakot, which was struck down by IAF's Mirage 2000, was headed by Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar's brother-in-law Maulana Yusuf Azhar alias Ustad Ghouri.
"In an intelligence-led operation in the early hours of today, India struck the biggest training camp of JeM in Balakot. In this operation, a very large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and groups of jihadis who were being trained for fidayeen action were eliminated. This facility at Balakot was headed by MAULANA YUSUF AZHAR (alias USTAD GHOURI), the brother-in-law of MASOOD AZHAR, Chief of JeM."
As per sources, Yusuf Azhar, brother-in-law of JeM chief Masood Azhar was killed in IAF Airstrike in Balakot, Pakistan. He was on Interpol list & was among the most wanted in India, who was heading the largest terror camp of JeM in Pakistan.