Coming out strongly in support of his men involved in rescue operation in Chhattisgarh Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne dismissed as “nonsense” the allegation that IAF personnel abandoned an injured policeman in a chopper.
“The impression has been created that IAF men ran away by leaving an injured behind. I think this is all nonsense and completely untrue. I do not think this is the way to function in a situation like this,” Browne told reporters at Yelahanka air base. “They (the crew) did an extremely professional job under those circumstances.’’
He also said that the fear of being taken hostage by the Maoists was also one of the reasons to leave the spot.
The Air chief’s reaction came a day after the defence minister AK Antony said “mountain should not be made out of a mole hill.”
Browne also expressed surprised over the leakage of Union home secretary’s letter in which he raised serious questioned about the conduct of the IAF men and demanded and action for the lapses.
“Indiscriminate firing from Maoists had damaged the chopper badly. Entire cabin was filled with hydraulic fuel. And our Garud commandos sustained serious chemical burns. Their eyes were damaged because of fuel. Firing continued till half an hour and injured wireless operator could not be moved,” he said.
The air chief also called this as an attempt to create rift amongst the security forces in the Maoist-affected areas.