New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: India on Wednesday observed the fifth anniversary of the surgical strike that was conducted by the Indian Army in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) in retaliation to the deadly Uri attack that claimed the lives of 18 soldiers.

The surgical strikes were conducted by the Para Special Forces (SFs) units of the Indian Army. The para commandos travelled around one to three km on foot in the PoK and conducted the strikes at the terror camps, killing between 35 to 70 terrorists.

Speaking to news agency ANI in an interview, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had once said that the strikes were conducted due to the "rage" among the soldiers of the Army. He said that the security forces were given "freehand" by the Centre to conduct the strikes.

Why the surgical strike was conducted by the Indian Army?

On September 18, 2016, four terrorists of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Muhammad crossed the LoC and carried out a 'fidayeen' attack at an Army brigade headquarters in Jammu and Kashmir's Uri. The terrorists used around 20 hand grenades at Army tents, killing 18 soldiers while dozens were injured.

The soldiers belonged to the 10th battalion, Dogra Regiment (10 Dogra) and the 6th battalion, Bihar Regiment.

All four terrorists were later killed by the Army in a gun battle that lasted for nearly six hours.

How India conducted the surgical strike in PoK?

Following the attack, PM Modi, then Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Army Chief General Dalbir Singh and National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval held a high-level meet to review the situation in the Valley.

After the meet, the Centre authorised the Army to take necessary actions and conduct surgical strikes in PoK. 11 days later, on the intervening night of September 28 and 29, the Army launched the surgical strikes on terror camps in the PoK.

As per reports, the teams of the 4th para battalion crossed the LoC near the Kupwara district while 9 para soldiers crossed it near the Poonch district. By the morning of September 29, the Army had completely conducted the surgical strikes and returned safely to the Indian side, suffering only one injury.

Later that day, Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh, Indian Director General of Military Operations (DGMO), said that it had received "very credible and specific information" about "terrorist teams" who were preparing to "carry out infiltration and conduct terrorist strikes inside Jammu and Kashmir and in various metros in other states".

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma