Military Aviation

India’s Sukhoi Su-30MKI Shot Down A Pakistani Drone Along the International Border in Rajasthan

This is the second Pakistani military drone shot down by the IAF after the last one was shot down along the Indo-Pak International Border near Gujrat on Feb. 27.

A Pakistani drone was reportedly shot down by an Indian Air Force (IAF) Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jet on Mar. 4, 2019 after being detected inside Indian Airspace, in Rajasthan’s Bikaner sector by air defence radars around 11:30 am, several media outlets said.

Interestingly, this is the second Pakistani military drone shot down by the IAF after the last one was shot down along the Indo-Pak International Border near Gujrat on Feb. 27.Just before the news of this downed Pakistani military drone came out, Pakistani social media exploded with speculations that IAF may have carried out another air strike, this time in Fort Abbas in Pakistan’s Punjab province.

This development comes at a time when tensions between rivals India and Pakistan are all time high: as we have already explained Pakistan and India both carried out aerial bombing missions last week, including a clash on Feb. 27, that saw an Indian pilot shot down over the disputed region of Kashmir in an incident that alarmed global powers and sparked fears of a war.

A Pakistan military spokesman told reporters on Feb. 27 that Pakistani jets “locked” on Indian targets to demonstrate Pakistan’s capacity to strike back at India, but then chose to fire in an empty field where there would be no casualties.

Pakistan said its mission on Feb. 27 was in retaliation for India violating its airspace and sovereignty a day earlier, when Indian Mirage 2000 fighter jets bombed a forest area near the northern city of Balakot.

India said it struck at militant training camps, but Islamabad denied any such camps existed, as did some villagers in the area when Reuters visited.

The fresh anti-militancy drive was launched after a Kashmiri suicide bomber, a member of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorist group, killed 40 Indian paramilitary police on Feb. 14.

The U.S. Embassy in Islamabad said on Mar. 3 that it is investigating if Pakistan had used the F-16 fighter to shoot down an Indian MiG-21, potentially violating Washington’s military sale agreements that limit how Pakistan can use the planes, as the stand-off between the nuclear-armed Asian neighbors appeared to be easing.

While Pakistan has denied using F-16 jets during a dogfight that downed an Indian Mig-21 warplane over Kashmir on Feb. 27, it has not specified which planes it used, though it assembles Chinese-designed JF-17 fighter jets on its soil.

Photo credit: U.S. Air Force, Indian Air Force and g4sp Edited by: diego_pmc – via Wikimedia Commons

Rohit Singh

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