Asserting that the two-day long Sunjuwan terror attack on military station here in which five soldiers attained martyrdom, a civilian died, 10 people were injured and three terrorists were eliminated, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said the attack was sponsored by Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Azhar Masood.
She also said, ‘Pakistan will have to pay for this misadventure.’ “The counter-terrorist operations at Sunjuwan here were called off on Monday morning at 1030 hrs but, the sanitisation operations are on,” said the Defence Minister while addressing a press conference here at Tiger Division.
She said, “the terrorists belonged to Jaish-E-Mohammad outfit sponsored by Azhar Masood, residing in Pakistan and deriving support from there in”. “The terrorists had chosen to attack a Military Station which housed both troops and families of the Indian Army.
The cantonment is located on the outskirts of Jammu, approximately 30 Kms from the International Boundary, in a semi urbanized environment with densely populated civilian localities, adjacent to the cantonments perimeter fence,” she said, adding that the demography of the cantonment and adjoining area indicates the possibility of local support to the terrorists.
Ms Sitharaman added that an alert had been sounded on the likelihood of terrorist attack around this period and accordingly, Quick Reaction Teams were positioned in vulnerable areas.
“It was assessed that Pakistan sponsored terrorists may target softer elements, hence a QRT was also positioned at the Sunjuwan family accommodation,” adding, “the intrusion of the terrorists inside the Cantonment was promptly detected by the sentry and challenged by the nearest available QRT, leading to a brief exchange of fire”. “This immediate action compelled the terrorists to split into single individuals thereby preventing a coordinated strike,” she added.