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Surgical strikes decision was a 'big risk', Was concerned about our soldiers: PM Modi


New Delhi, Jan 1: Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the Indian Army Special Forces' commandos, who conducted the 2016 surgical strikes across the Line of Control (LoC), were told to come back before sunrise, irrespective of the mission's success.

Surgical strikes decision was a big risk, Was concerned about our soldiers: PM Modi

"I gave clear orders that whether you get success or failure, don't think about that but come back before sunrise. Don't fall for the lure and prolong it (the operation)," said PM Modi in an interview to news agency ANI.

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Knowing that the operation was a big risk, PM Modi said his major concern was the safety of the soldiers who were crossing the LoC. "I knew it [surgical strikes] was a big risk. I never care about any political risk to me. The biggest consideration for me was the safety of our soldiers," he said.

Hooda, who had overseen the surgical strikes conducted across the Line of Control (LoC) on the night of September 28-29, 2016, has triggered a major controversy by saying that constant maintenance of hype around the military operations was unwarranted.

DS Hooda's comment on surgical strikes as an opportunity to attack Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

"Spoken like a true soldier General [DS Hooda]. India is so proud of you. Mr 36 [Modi] has absolutely no shame in using our military as a personal asset. He used the surgical strikes for political capital and the Rafale deal to increase Anil Ambani's real capital by Rs 30,000 crore (sic)," Rahul tweeted.

The surgical strikes were followed by a pre-dawn attack on September 18, 2016 in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed by Pakistan-based terrorists in Uri. As public outrage in India grew, the cross-border strike was cleared by Prime Minister Modi. The then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, NSA Ajit Doval, then Army Chief Dalbir Singh Suhag and Northern Army Commander DS Hooda in consultation with other security agencies had planned out this covert strike.

India had planned for about 10 days before launching commandos across the border.

On September 29, 2016, a crack team of the Indian Army crossed the border and struck at least 4 terror launchpads some of which were collocated with the Pakistan Army facilities.

Videos of the strike across the LoC were made public this year in September, a couple of days before the second anniversary of the strike.

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