Omar Abdullah
Omar Abdullah

PM should suspend his political events till ‘captured’ IAF pilot returns safely: Omar

Agency News

Srinagar, Feb 27 : Asserting that Prime Minister Narendra Modi must suspend his political engagements until Wing Commander Abhinandan returns safely, former J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah said 'it can’t be business as usual with Narandra Modi making political speeches while an Indian pilot is a Pakistani captive'.

Mr Abdullah, who is the Vice President of National Conference (NC), also urged Pakistan to treat Wing Commander Abhinandan as they (Pak) would have wanted India to treat their men in uniform captured on this side of the border.

“PM Modi must suspend his political activities until #WingCommanderAbhinandan is returned safely. It can’t be business as usual with him cross crossing the country at tax payer expense making political speeches while our pilot is a Pakistani captive,” Mr Abdullah, wrote on micro-blogging site twitter.

“In the meantime Pakistan please treat him as you would have us treat one of your men in uniform should he be unfortunate enough to be captured on this side of the border,” he added.

The NC Vice President said he has also requested the opposition to postpone their political activities. "For the record it’s not just unsolicited advice to the PM, I had requested the opposition to postpone the meeting in light of the developments, especially after the news of our pilot being in Pakistani custody but they felt otherwise. I chose not to attend as a result," he said.

Mr Abdullah also prayed for the early and safe return of the IAF pilot. “Thoughts with the family, friends & colleagues of #WingCommanderAbhinandan. Prayers for his early & safe return home to all those eagerly waiting for him,” he tweeted.

The Centre on Wednesday evening confirmed that one Mig 21 Bison of the Indian Air Force (IAF) was shot down and its pilot has been ‘missing in action’. Meanwhile, Pakistan has claimed that the pilot is in their custody. A video of Wing Commander Abhinandan being questioned by Pakistan Army has also gone viral on social media though its authenticity could not be confirmed.

External affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar in New Delhi said Pakistan attempt to target military installations on Indian side were foiled but in the process one MiG 21 was lost and the pilot is 'missing in action'. “One fighter jet of Pakistan Air Force was also shot down in the aerial engagement by IAF's Mig 21 Bison,” he added. (UNI)