He said that combing operations would continue for another day before the entire area is declared as secure.
Addressing the media, the minister said that two of the bodies of the terrorists have been charred beyond recognition. A DNA test would have to be conducted to cross check and be sure, he also said.
The minister reiterated that all the equipment at the Pathankot air force station is secure. I will request the personnel to permit the media to go inside the air force station once the combing operations are completed, he also said.
He congratulated the security forces and said that they battled highly motivated terrorists and have done a commendable job.
The terrorists were highly motivated. Terrorists had carried 40 to 50 kilograms of ammunition and high quality explosives on them. Some of the material found on them have a Pakistan mark to it. This will be probed and the NIA is already doing its job.
Further the minister also added that while there were gaps in operations, the question of security being compromised does not arise.
The operations took sometime because the terrorists had plenty of ammunition on them and also it takes time to guard and cover such a large campus. The minister also added that all defence bases are being audited now.
Further he also added that the martyrs of the Pathankot operations are being declared as battle casualties. This would mean that the families will be given the benefits that war casualties get.
Further the minister also added that the Border Security Force has been asked to give details on the areas from where the terrorists could have infiltrated. He also said that the NIA would probe how the terrorists managed to enter into the air force station.
On why the NSG was roped in for the operation, the minister said that there were civilians in the campus. Apart from the 5,000 civilians there was defence equipment which needed to be safeguarded as well. The NSG was better equipped to handle such a situation, the minister added.