India today produced debris of the AIM-120 missile which was fired by the Pakistani F-16
Airforce spokesperson Group captain Anupam Banerjee with debris of the AIM-120 missile which was fired by the Pakistani F-16 | Suraj Singh Bisht/ThePrint
Text Size:

New Delhi: The Indian military Thursday produced hard evidence to prove that Pakistan had used F-16 fighter jets to target four military installations in Jammu and Kashmir, decimating Islamabad’s claim that the US-origin aircraft was not used.

India also once again asserted that the MiG-21, a vintage fighter first introduced in 1963, was able to shoot down a modern F-16 of the Pakistan Air Force, making it the first such hit in the history of military warfare.

Addressing a joint press conference of the three armed forces on the South Block lawns outside the Ministry of Defence, IAF officials showed parts of an ‘AIM-120’ Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) that was fired by Pakistani fighter jets.

While Pakistan had claimed that the JF-17, jointly manufactured with China, was used in the air strikes, the fact is that the AIM-120, manufactured by US firm Raytheon, cannot be fired from that aircraft.

Wreckage of AMRAAM missile recovered on the Indian side of the LoC | Twitter

“There is enough evidence to show that F-16s were used in this mission through their electronic signatures. Parts of AMRAAM air-to-air missile, which is carried only on the F-16s, was recovered east of Rajouri within Indian territory,” Air Vice Marshal R.G.K. Kapoor told reporters.

“The fact remains that one F-16 of the Pakistan Air Force was shot down.”

Answering the media’s questions, Kapoor also said the Pakistan media had shown parts of the engines and drop tanks that didn’t belong to India’s downed MiG-21, which confirmed that the F-16 was shot.

Also read: In high state of alert to respond to Pakistan – Indian Army, Navy, Air Force assure nation

What Pakistan had claimed

The director-general of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Major General Asif Ghafoor, had said F-16s were not used in the entire operation, and no Pakistani fighter jet had been hit.

Pakistan had also released pictures of the debris of the MiG-21 Bison it had shot down to support its claim that the Pakistan Air Force had got the better of the Indian Air Force.

But it turns out that in its rush to win the information battle, the ISPR also released an image of the debris from its own F-16 fighter jet.

Also read: Wing Commander Abhinandan shot down Pakistani F-16 seconds before his plane was hit

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism



  1. Hello ,

    Did you bother to match the serial number of the missile with that of the Manufacturer? Or did you just lap up what the Govt gave you .

    • even after the producing hard evidence hypocrites always question the indian side despite the fact that the pakistani army has a long history of lying and spreading false propaganda

Comments are closed.