fifty years ago November 27, 1969 Archives

From the Archives (November 27, 1969): ‘Violation of Indian air space’

The Defence Minister, Mr. Swaran Singh, confirmed in the Lok Sabha to-day [November 26, New Delhi] that Pakistan committed “a serious violation of Indian air space” recently by allowing its Air Force transport plane to go beyond the predetermined route but categorically ruled out any abrogation of the Indo-Pakistan agreement governing overflights on this point. Mr. Swaran Singh was replying to a call-attention motion tabled by Mr. D. N. Patodia (Swat.) and four others on the “continuous and wilful violation of the air corridor between West and East Pakistan by Pakistani aircraft over the territory of India.” He said he had made a comparative study of movement of aircraft of the two countries and his impression was that the agreement was not unfavourable to India. Mr. Swaran Singh admitted there had been some time lag in making a protest to Pakistan over the incident but pointed out that Indian fighter aircraft had intercepted the Pakistani transport plane in time and brought it back to the pre-determined route. “There cannot be a better protest than taking action then and there,” he said. He said that in considering the overflights agreement they should not mix up with it India’s overall policy towards Pakistan, whose hostile postures towards this country were well known.

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