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'Don't count mosquitoes killed': VK Singh takes a dig at Opposition for questioning casualties in IAF's Balakot air strikes

Union minister VK Singh on Wednesday said it's unfortunate that the Opposition wants to count the number of terrorists killed in the Indian Air Force (IAF) air strikes in Balakot in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on 26 February. He said: "Bombs were exploded, buildings were hit and will people not be killed after an explosion of a 1,000 kg bomb? If killed, then you make an estimate of the number of people killed. I don't know who wants to count it. It's unfortunate."

Singh made the remark to clarify the comments he made on Twitter on Tuesday, mocking those questioning the casualties caused by the air force strikes on the Jaish-e-Mohammed's terrorist training camp in Balakot. Singh had taken a jibe at the naysayers, using the example of killing mosquitoes with a repellent to drive home his point.

In his latest barb, according to CNN-News18, Singh also said that during the next air strikes, Opposition leaders should be tied to missiles and air dropped to bomb terror targets.

Opposition leaders have been prodding the government to reveal an official toll in the Balakot air strikes, amid international media reports questioning the impact of the IAF operation.

On Tuesday, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman refused to confirm a casualty figure, saying: "The foreign secretary gave a statement. That is the official figure," she said, referring to the briefing by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale on the day of the air strikes.

Gokhale had not given any figure and only said a "very large number" of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and groups of jihadis being trained for suicide attacks in India had been eliminated.

 Dont count mosquitoes killed: VK Singh takes a dig at Opposition for questioning casualties in IAFs Balakot air strikes

File image of VK Singh. PTI

Meanwhile, Home Minister Rajnath Singh attacked the Congress, saying that the Opposition party was not willing to accept an assessment by the National Technical Research Organisation, which had said that some 300 mobile phones were active at the Jaish camp before the IAF's Mirage 2000 fighter jets bombed it.

It was BJP president Amit Shah who had first claimed at a political rally that "more than 250 terrorists" were killed in the operation, further provoking the Opposition to press for an official figure. On his remarks, Singh had said it was not a confirmed figure but an estimate.

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Updated Date: Mar 06, 2019 12:20:07 IST