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"We have 'irrefutable evidence' to show MiG-21 Shot down F-16"- IAF

Indian airforce rebuts Pak claims that PAF did not lose any fighter jet in the engagement over the skies of Nowshera in Rajouri district of Jammu Province

New Delhi: When Indian air force sent out a message to various media houses about a 5.30 pm 'in-camera' press conference, the speculations went running high that IAF may release the visual evidence of February 26 'Balakot action' or February 27 aerial dog fight in the skies of Nowshera sector when IAF claimed to have shot down a Pak F-16. The press conference though was not about showcasing visual evidence, however, IAF showed several slides of graphic-captures from airborne warning and control system (AWACS) to the media, and Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor, Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Operations) emphatically said "there was irrefutable evidence available to establish that Pakistan Air Force had lost one F-16 in the air action, the IAF is restricting the information being shared in public domain due to security and confidentiality concerns".

"Irrefutable evidence showing MiG-21 shot down Pak F-16"

Officials of Indian Airforce claimed that the forces also had electronic evidence in the form of radio-telephony intercepts of the PAF F-16 strike package and ground wireless intercepts but avoiding to place the same in public domain due to security and confidentiality concerns.
"there was irrefutable evidence available to establish that Pakistan Air Force had lost one F-16 in the air action, the IAF is restricting the information being shared in the public domain due to security and confidentiality concerns"
Air Vice Marshal Kapoor said, "the fact is that the IAF had achieved its objectives of successfully striking the Balakot camp and later thwarting the retaliatory PAF attack against Indian military installations that followed on February 27".

"Everything was over in 90 sec"

The AWACS radar image of the engagement area west of the LoC opposite Jhangar clearly establishes that there was a bunch of F-16s opposite Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman's MiG-21. In a second image taken 10 seconds later, one of the F-16s disappeared. It was all over in 90 seconds.
The AWACS radar image of the engagement area west of the LoC opposite Jhangar clearly establishes that there was a bunch of F-16s opposite Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman's MiG-21. In a second image taken 10 seconds later, one of the F-16s disappeared. It was all over in 90 seconds.
“That’s the F-16 the PAF lost,” the IAF officer said. It is believed to have been the first ever kill of an F-16 by a MiG-21 Bison, fighter jets of two different generations.

Change in Pak stance now

Pakistan earlier claimed that IAF did not shot down any of its F-16s as it did not use any but later shifted its stance. Now Pakistan says it is immaterial whether the aircrafts used were F-16s or JF-17s. Pakistan defence authorities now say that "the events of February 27 are “part of history now” and maintain that no Pakistani F-16 “was hit by the Indian Air Force” that day.