Punjab, Gujarat, Himachal on high alert as Pakistan threatens retaliation

Last Updated: Wed, Feb 27, 2019 10:37 hrs
Punjab's Pathankot on red alert; search for armed men underway

New Delhi: In the aftermath of the Balakot airstrike conducted by the IAF early on Tuesday morning, the bordering states of Punjab, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh have been put on high alert.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that his country would respond to what he described as "uncalled-for aggression" and asked his compatriots to prepare for "all eventualities".

"[The] PM has directed that elements of national power including the Armed Forces and the people of Pakistan to remain prepared [sic] for all eventualities," said a statement posted by Khan.

Six districts in Punjab - Ferozepur, Tarn Taran, Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Fazilka - have been put on high alert.

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said, "Punjab is on alert and I will be touring bordering areas tomorrow. We are ready for any eventuality. I told the Union home minister that if there is anything that Punjab can do we are there to for the defence of our country."

The chief minister reviewed the situation at a high-level meeting with the top brass of the police and civil administration and decided to stay in the sensitive border area for onground assessment of the situation.

Apart from Punjab, Gujarat Police has also issued a "high alert" across the state following India's preemptive strike on Jaish-e-Mohammed's biggest terror campaigning Pakistan.

Gujarat's Director General of Police Shivanand Jha cancelled a conference on crime-related issues scheduled at the Police Bhavan in Gandhinagar and asked all officers to return to their respective headquarters in view of the alert sounded in the state.

The Himachal Pradesh Police issued an alert for all districts in the state.

An alert has been issued to all district SPs in Himachal Pradesh to ensure safety of vital installations and also to keep sharp vigil in their respective districts, Himachal Pradesh Police spokesperson and SP (Law and Order) Khushhal Sharma said.