Army gets drawn into row over sur­gi­cal strike ‘hype’

Chief Plays Down Re­mark Of Of­fi­cer Who Had Key Role

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - FRONT PAGE - — GEN BIPIN RAWAT Army Chief

New Delhi: Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat on Satur­day de­scribed as an “in­di­vid­ual’s per­cep­tion” the com­ments of for­mer North­ern Army com­man­der, Lt Gen D S Hooda (Retd), that the 2016 sur­gi­cal strikes against ter­ror launch pads in Pak­istan-oc­cu­pied Kash­mir were over­hyped and given a po­lit­i­cal res­o­nance.

Gen Rawat seemed to dis­tance him­self from Lt Gen Hooda’s com­ments, telling ANI, “Th­ese are an in­di­vid­ual per­son’s per­cep­tion. So let’s not com­ment on them,” even as he noted that Hooda Th­ese (D S Hooda’s re­marks) are an in­di­vid­ual per­son’s per­cep­tion. So let’s not com­ment on them was one of the main per­sons in­volved in the op­er­a­tion and he re­spected his opin­ion.

Hooda had said, “Did the over­hype help? I say, com­pletely no. If you start hav­ing po­lit­i­cal res­o­nance in mil­i­tary op­er­a­tions, it is not good.” New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi took a dig at PM Naren­dra Modi over Lt Gen D S Hooda’s com­ments. Modi, he said, was us­ing the armed forces as a per­sonal as­set to build po­lit­i­cal cap­i­tal.

Re­fer­ring to the PM as “Mr 36”, Rahul said Gen Hooda had spo­ken like a true sol­dier and that the PM had used the sur­gi­cal strikes for po­lit­i­cal cap­i­tal and the Rafale deal to in­crease in­dus­tri­al­ist Anil Am­bani’s real cap­i­tal by Rs 30,000 crore.

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