Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday said that the Indian Air Force attack on Pakistani terror camp in Balakot is a “whole new paradigm” and a “totally new ballgame”.

“We’ve entered a whole new paradigm with the Balakote air strike. The post Uri strike was to avenge our losses, Balakote was a ‘preemptive strike to prevent an imminent JeM attack’.  Totally new ballgame,” he wrote.

 

Expressing fears of retaliation from Pakistan, Abdullah said that the leadership now has to ensure that the people living near the border and LoC are not caught in it.

“Now we have an obligation to ensure that our people living near the international border & line of control are not caught in any Pakistani response. Local administrations need to be ready to evacuate & rehouse people to safe areas if situation escalates,” he wrote.

“I’m in touch with my party colleagues in frontier areas to lend all possible help & assistance, both to the administration as well as to any people caught up in any Pakistani misadventure,” Abdullah, the vice president of the National Conference (NC), tweeted.

 

Earlier today, Abdullah said that the attack on Balakot, which is in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), is “hugely embarrassing for Pakistan.

“Regardless of what the other side may claim was or wasn’t hit the planes crossed over, dropped their payload & flew back completely unscathed,” he tweeted.

 

In a 21-minute offensive, 12 IAF Mirage 2000 fighter jets carried out the strike at around 3.30 am on Tuesday dropping bombs weighing 1000 kg on terror camps across LoC.

In a statement the MEA said that India hit the “biggest training camp of JeM in Balakot”.

“In this operation, a very large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and groups of jihadis who were being trained for fidayeen action were eliminated.  This facility at Balakot was headed by Maulana Yousuf Azhar (alias Ustad Ghouri), the brother-in-law of Masood Azhar, Chief of JeM,” Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said.

He added that the “non-military preemptive action was specifically targeted at the JeM camp”.

“The selection of the target was also conditioned by our desire to avoid civilian casualties.  The facility is located in thick forest on a hilltop far away from any civilian presence,” he said.

Hours after the air strikes on terror camps and launchpads, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security at Lok Kalyan Marg.

Read More: PM Modi chairs CCS meet after India hits terror camps across LoC; over 200 terrorists killed, say reports

Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj were at the meeting, apart from National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and other officials.

Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Asif Ghafoor confirmed in a tweet early Tuesday about the IAF strikes. The incident took place in the Muzaffarabad sector, claimed Radio Pakistan.