Amid the raging controversy over his statement on the Poonch killings, Defence Minister A.K. Antony on Wednesday briefed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the situation on the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir where five troops were killed in an ambush.
Mr. Antony met Dr. Singh against the backdrop of controversy over his statement that the soldiers were killed by “terrorists along with persons dressed in Pakistan Army uniform”.
Mr. Antony has come under severe attack for the statement, with Opposition saying it amounted to giving an escape route to Pakistan which has always been in a denial mode on involvement of its army personnel in any act against India.
He sought to defend his statement, saying it was made on the basis of information received at that time.
Making a suo motu statement in both the Houses of Parliament on Tuesday, Mr. Antony had said an Indian Army patrol, comprising one junior commissioned officer and five other ranks, was “ambushed on our side” of the LoC in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir.
“The ambush was carried out by approximately 20 heavily-armed terrorists along with persons dressed in Pakistan army uniform,” he said.
“In the ensuing fire fight, five Indian soldiers were martyred and one soldier was injured,” he said.