General Bikram Singh said he will visit the late Lance-Naik’s family today

Army Chief General Bikram Singh on Monday asserted that pressure should be applied, from several quarters, on the Pakistan Army to return the head of Lance Naik Hemraj.

General Singh said he would pay a visit to the family of Lance Naik Hemraj. The martyred soldier’s family members have been observing a fast for the past six days to demand that his head be returned to them.

“We have to make the Pakistan Army accountable. There are diplomatic, political ways of doing it. But what do you do when that nation and its Army are in denial mode,” he told journalists at the annual press conference held on the eve of the Army Day. “Our demand will also be conveyed to the DGMO [Director-General of Military Operations]. It is also [going to be] conveyed on Monday in no uncertain terms at a flag meeting. Let us see if the Pakistan Army heeds to our request and complies,” he said.

Lance Naik Hemraj’s wife and mother have refused to end their fast demanding that the Army Chief visit their home and assure them that the soldier’s head would be brought back from Pakistan.

Asked about the demand by his family, the Army Chief said: “I will go there after the Army Day is over on Tuesday. There is no problem in it. I did not know about this demand from his family. As head of the Army’s large family I will go.”

Senior Army officials said that in the past too there had been such incidents of Indian soldiers being beheaded by Pakistani troops. They said one such incident took place in May 2000 and two similar incidents in July 2011.

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