If Pak closed airspace, that's their problem: Air Chief

Deepika S

New Delhi, June 24: Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa on Monday said that Pakistan closing its airspace is a problem for them and it has never affected India.

"They [Pakistan] have closed their airspace that is their problem," ANI quoted Dhanoa as saying at a press conference in Gwalior.

"Our economy is vibrant and air traffic is a very important part and you have noticed that the Air Force has never stopped our civil air traffic," he said.

"Rest of it we did not allow tension with Pakistan to dictate our civil aviation because our economy is much bigger and much stronger than Pakistan," he added.

Rafale replica put up outside IAF chief's home opposite Congress headquarters

Pakistan had fully closed its airspace on February 26 after an IAF strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Balakot. Since then, it has only opened two routes, both of them pass through southern Pakistan, of the total 11.

On February 26, Indian Air Force jets struck a Jaish-e-Mohammad camp in Balakot in retaliation against the killing of 40 Central Reserve Force jawans in Pulwama 12 days before.

This was in the aftermath of the targeting of an Indian security convoy in Kashmir's Pulwama region on 14 February by a suicide bomber belonging to a Pakistan-based terrorist group. The Pulwama attack killed 40 security personnel and spiked tensions between India and Pakistan.

Also Read:

How Indian Navy tracked down Pakistan’s PNS Saad post Balakot

How India's BMD program forced Pakistan to develop 'MIRV capable' Ababeel missile

"Status quo" will prevail, says Pakistan as it extends airspace ban with India till June 28