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Indian Army chief’s message to Pakistan: ‘Bloodier nose’

Rawat questions PM Imran Khan’s US visit, accompanied by the chiefs of Pakistan’s army

By Muzaffar Raina in Srinagar

  • Published 27.07.19, 2:21 AM
  • Updated 27.07.19, 2:21 AM
President Donald Trump greets Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan as he arrives at the White House, Monday, July 22, 2019, in Washington.
President Donald Trump greets Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan as he arrives at the White House, Monday, July 22, 2019, in Washington. (AP)

The army chief, General Bipin Rawat, on Friday accused Pakistan of using American money to foment trouble in India and suggested that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s recent US visit was an attempt at keeping the trend alive.

Rawat threatened Pakistan with a “bloodier nose” if it undertook another Kargil-like “misadventure”, speaking on a day the 20th anniversary of Kargil Vijay Divas was celebrated across Jammu and Kashmir.

“My message is, ‘Don’t do it (again)’. This (Kargil) was a misadventure. Misadventures are normally not repeated; you will get a bloodier nose next time,” Rawat said when a reporter asked what his message to Pakistan would be if it planned a repeat of the 1999 intrusion.

At the news briefing in the Dras sector of Kargil, Rawat was also questioned about Imran’s US visit, accompanied by the chiefs of Pakistan’s army and its intelligence wing, the ISI.

Asked if Pakistan was seeking weapons from the US citing Afghanistan or some other pretext to use them against India, he said: “Your question (answer) is in your question. I fully agree with you…. They (Pakistan) are willing to do anything which will fetch them money. And once they get money, what is the action that will follow? The same that has happened these years.”

Asked whether President Donald Trump’s offer to mediate on Kashmir had added to India’s problems, Rawat said there was a difference between “talk and action”.

In 1999, then US President Bill Clinton is believed to have helped defuse the tension by telling then Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to pull out of Kargil.

Rawat, however, exuded confidence that the situation had now changed since “the international community” has “singled out (Pakistan) as a state that has been sponsoring terrorism on Indian soil”.

“The world at large knows they have training camps, (that) they are providing not just moral support but financials and weapons as well to the terrorists. They are infiltrating people from across the borders to join hands with local youths to up the ante,” he said. Rawat rejected Imran’s claim that the Pulwama attack was carried out by local Kashmiris.

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