If Pakistan is ready for war, so are we: Rajnath Singh exclusive on Pulwama attack
If Pakistan is ready for war, India is "not behind", Home Minister Rajnath Singh told Aaj Tak in an exclusive interview broadcast on Friday.
India has vowed to avenge last week's suicide bombing in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district, in which 40 Indian paramilitary soldiers were killed.
The attack was masterminded by Jaish-e-Mohammed, a Pakistan-based group, and India has accused Pakistani spy agency ISI of involvement. Islamabad has denied responsibility.
In a televised address broadcast this week, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan warned of retaliation in the event of an attack by India, and said his country was ready to hold talks on terrorism.
Islamabad has warned residents of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir along the Line of Control of an Indian attack, and asked them to take precautions and report suspicious activity.
Rajnath Singh told Aaj Tak he would not say how India would respond to the attack in Pulwama, but pointed out that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said security forces had full freedom.
This week India killed the mastermind of the Pulwama bombing and two other terrorists in an encounter in the same district in Jammu and Kashmir. It has also launched a diplomatic offensive to isolate Pakistan on the world stage.
The United Nations Security Council has condemned the bombing and acknowledged Jaish-e-Mohammed's claim of responsibility. The council includes China, an ally of Pakistan's that has blocked attempts to get the Jaish chief, Masood Azhar, designated a global terrorist by the UN.
Rajnath Singh told Aaj Tak that Pakistan was completely isolated, and that China was with India on the issue of the Pulwama attack.
Besides going on a diplomatic offensive, India has increased basic customs duty on Pakistani exports and reiterated plans to stop the sharing of excess river water with Pakistan.