North of Delhi, 10 airports shut; Vaishno Devi chopper service suspended

Samar Kerni, Jammu

The Hush Post | 13:40 | one-minute-read

Ten airports mostly north of Delhi, including Chandigarh, Amritsar, Jammu, Leh, Srinagar,  Jaisalmer, Pithoragarh, Kangra, Kullu-Manali have been shut down amidst the growing tensions on the international Indo-Pak border. Also, the helicpoter service to Vaishno Devi have been suspended with immediate effect.

The list includes airports in Amritsar, Jammu, Srinagar, Leh, Kullu-Manali, Kangra, Shimla, Pathankot, Jaisalmer, Pithoragarh ( Uttarakhand) – all close to the border.

While the official notice mentions a three-month shutdown, sources said it is the outer limit and depending on the situation on ground, it can be revoked earlier.

Meanwhile, authorities have ordered closure of educational institutions in a 5-km radius along the Line of Control (LoC) in Rajouri and Poonch districts.

On the other hand Pakistan Armed Forces spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor claimed on Twitter that the PAF shot down two Indian aircrafts inside Pakistani airspace. He further claimed that they have arrested one Indian pilot.

Mohammad Faisal, Pakistan’s MoFA spokesperson had said, “PAF undertook strikes across LoC from Pakistani airspace. Sole purpose of this action was to demonstrate our right, will and capability for self defence.  We do not wish to escalate but are fully prepared if forced into that paradigm. That is why we undertook the action with clear warning and in broad daylight.”

However, India denied Pakistani claims of shooting down Indian jets and said that all Indian pilots are accounted for. Earlier Pakistan put out a statement claiming “strikes across Line of Control from within Pakistani airspace”, a day after Indian fighter jets destroyed a vast terror training camp within Pakistan in a pre-dawn strike.

 

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