New Delhi (IANS) From Punjab to Tamil Nadu, from Maharashtra to West Bengal, the families of CRPF troopers killed in the Pulwama suicide bombing hailed Tuesday’s air strike inside Pakistan, with many saying had they come earlier, many security personnel could have been saved, stressing the need to better guard the forces from Pulwama-like attacks.
Mita Santra, the widow of West Bengal’s martyred CRPF trooper Bablu Santra best summed it up: “They did not think about installing IED jammers in the CRPF convoy or think about ensuring a safe journey for them. I think they must give more attention to the safety of the jawans”.
It was the binding responsibility of the Indian government to ensure all the defence forces posted in various parts of the nation are safe and secure.
The Indian Air Force carried out air strikes early Tuesday morning across the Line of Control in Pakistan’s Balakot.
The widows of two Maharashtra troopers killed in Pulwama welcomed the IAF action.
“I am very satisfied. This is a real tribute to the 40 troopers killed in Pulwama. Finally, their souls will rest in peace,” said Sushma Sanjay Rajput of Malkapur village.
“I am happy that this action has been taken to avenge the untimely deaths of our soldiers (troopers) in Pulwama last fortnight. The government has finally acted,” said Vandana Nitin Rathod of Chorpangra village.
“India has taken revenge for the Pulwama suicide bombing with the IAF attack on the biggest training camp of the JeM at Balakot in Pakistan”, said Layak Ram, the father of one of the slain CRPF troopers, Tilak Raj, in Shimla.
Rajwanti from Unnao said that the “attack… is one which brings some solace to the broken mothers”.
The mother of martyr Ajit Singh, Asha, however said the offensive should not stop with the killing of some militants. Terrorism has to be wiped out completely from the neighbourhood, she said.
Meena, widow of martyr Ajit Kumar Azad, echoed similar sentiments but said India should launch a bigger attack and that she would only rest in peace when Pakistan government itself admits to the killing of thousands of its people.
In Varanasi, the family of Ramesh Yadav said there could not have been better news for them as they performed the “terahnvi sanskaar” of martyr Ramesh.
Ruby, wife of Pulwama martyr Shyam Babu, said her message to Modi is: “Don’t stop yet.”
Kuldeep, brother of martyr Pradeep Singh of Kannauj, also welcomed the air strikes and said that the action which has been initiated should not be called off and should be taken to its logical conclusion.
Harkesh Yadav, father of slain CRPF trooper Avdhesh Kumar Yadav, said: “I am proud of the operation. A bigger assault on terror launch pads is needed. The real happiness would be on the day when master of terror Hafiz Sayeed is eliminated.”
In Punjab, families of four CRPF martyrs welcomed the strikes.
Satpal Attri, father of martyr Maninder Singh Attri of Dinanagar town in Gurdaspur district, said the strikes were the right answer to those who had been indulging in promoting terrorism.
Jaswant Singh, the father of CRPF martyr Jaimal Singh, said: “We are thankful to the Modi government for giving a befitting reply to Pakistan and its terrorists. This will give solace to the martyrs and their families. We are very happy to hear about the retaliation. The morale of our troops and their families have been lifted after this.”
“We are very happy to hear about the air strikes…We are very proud today,” Jaimal Singh’s widow, Sukhjit Kaur, said.
The other two CRPF martyrs from Punjab were Sukhjinder Singh of Gandiwind village Tarn Taran district and Kulwinder Singh of Rouli village in Nurpur Bedi area of Ropar district.
The aerial strike elated the family of Karnataka’s martyred CRPF trooper H. Guru, as it came on the 13th day of his death, his younger brother Madhu said.
“All in the family and in the village are ‘khush’ (happy) and relieved that India struck the terrorists in Pakistan. This counter attack will give peace to my brother’s soul and we feel he will be liberated to go swarga (heaven),” Madhu, 26, told IANS from Guru’s native village Gudigere in Mandya district, about 100km from here.
“Coincidentally, the attack by India was on a day when we performed Guru’s last rites (vaikuntha samradhane) for his departed soul to reach heaven for liberation. We feel ‘dharma’ (justice) has been done to him,” said Madhu, a lineman in the state-run electricity distribution firm.
India has done the “right thing” by striking against the JeM’s biggest training camp at Balakot and “should continue to do so”, the father of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) trooper C. Sivachandran, who lost his life in the Pulwama attack, said in Chennai.