By Abhijit Majumder and Ajit K Dubey

New Delhi: Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan may be doing lip service by seeking better ties with India, but even under him, the Pakistan Army is continuing its support for cross-border terrorism and infiltration, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat told MyNation exclusively. He was the first guest on our big-ticket interview show, Face the Nation.

The Army chief said “there has not been much change” after Khan took over as the Pakistan PM because “infiltration has been continuing along the Line of Control” while his troops are constantly engaging terrorists in encounters on both the border and in the hinterland.

“There has not been much of a change. Infiltration has been continuing along the LoC. We have been having engagements on the LoC and we are targeting the terrorists. You are aware of the manner in which operations have been carried out on the LoC even after elections in Pakistan,” he said.

Asked about the 26/11 attacks and whether India had the wherewithal to take out its perpetrators the way Americans killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan, the chief said, “we do have the capability. But there are other ways of doing similar action to bring the perpetrators to book.”

Gen Rawat said because of efforts made by the political leadership and diplomacy, “Pakistan today is facing the heat not just from the US but from many other nations around the world. It is because we have been able to achieve what we wish to achieve in a different manner. I think the political hierarchy and diplomacy played their part and Pakistan today stands isolated.”

He acknowledged that though India may not have been able to bring the perpetrators to the book, “effort is on to reach them and make the international community ensure that they are either booked in their own country or are handed over to us for further action”.

The Army chief said Uri was another major attack in September 2016, and the Army replied with surgical strikes. He hinted that the country had showed Pakistan how it would retaliate in case of another 26/11-type attack.

“Many years later (after the Mumbai attacks) the Uri attack happened and we have displayed our will to carry out any action which will deter Pakistan from carrying out such an action again. In case any such incident happens again, the Indian Army along with the other defence forces are fully geared and prepared to take any action or a mission that the government may assign to us,” the chief asserted.