Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman responded to tough questions posed by India TV Editor-In-Chief and Chairman Rajat Sharma in Aap Ki Adalat. From air strikes in Pakistan to national security and the opposition raising questions on India's actions, the defence minister was seen answering a volley of questions on the show.
Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat: Highlights
10:53 pm: On China blocking a bid to declare Masood Azhar as global terrorist at the UN Security Council, Sitharaman says: "China has probably a differential approach towards terrorism, whereas other world powers are united against terrorism. China should join hands with all other nations on this issue. After the massacre in New Zealand mosques, China must understand that terrorism takes all kinds of forms in different countries. China must recognize that terrorism is a global threat."
10:53 pm: If you ask him to repeat the same thing tomorrow, he will not be able to do it, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:52 pm: Rahul Gandhi is speaking on the basis of someone who is training him, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:50 pm: Congress President must share with the nation what discussions he and his party leaders had at a lunch with envoys of G-20 countries in Delhi recently: Sitharaman
10:40 pm: Congress should show proof or shut their mouth. Show proof if Rs 30,000 crore has gone into someone's hands, says Sitharaman
10:38 pm: Asked whether the current national mood after air strikes will help the BJP in LS elections, Sitharaman says: "I cannot say whether BJP will fain from it, but now that news about PM Modi's welfare programmes are reaching the common people, I can definitely say that the Congress will have to wait for another five years to come to power."
10:36 pm: On Congress President Rahul Gandhi alleging at a rally that the Prime Minister was busy at a photoshoot at Jim Corbett tiger reserve on the day the Pulwama terror attack took place, Sitharaman says: "The Prime Minister's Office has already replied to that. I want to ask Rahul Gandhi whether it is not a fact that he was partying on the night of 26 November 2008, when the Mumbai terror attacks took place. Let Rahul Gandhi reply to my charge."
10:31 pm: Asked whether Masood Azhar was supposed to come to Balakot two days later, and whether there was a proposal at one time to defer the air strike till his arrival, Sitharaman cryptically says: "There are too many factors while deciding strategy".
10:30 pm: Asked why there are different claims about the number of terrorists killed in Balakot, the Defence Minister says: "I cannot say specifically. There were public announcements in Pakistan about training being given to fidayeen at the camp. Names of trainers had been written on the boards. We cannot say how many terrorists were there on the night of air strike. The intel information available to us has the names of trainers. The government cannot give the number."
10:29 pm: On Congress leader Digvijay Singh's claim that he had pictures to prove that the air strike was not successful, Sitharaman says: "Did he visit Balakot? Pakistan will certainly give him permission."
10:27 pm: On Congress leader Kapil Sibal seeking evidence of bodies of terrorists killed in Balakot, the Defence Minister says: "Our men had gone there to fight a war, not to offer 'pind' (post-funeral prayers) to terrorists. Our soldiers do not take selfies."
10:25 pm: It is sad that the opposition questioned India on evidence, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:24 pm: I find it shocking, blatant lies by Pakistan, says Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat
10:23 pm: This is itself an evidence, which is why Pakistan is not letting media go there, says Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat
10:22 pm: If we had uprooted only trees, then why Pakistan is not granting permission to media to visit the area, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:16 pm: There was already intel information that the fidayeen were being trained to carry out suicide attacks inside India. We are taking measures at every step. This much I can share right now, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:15 pm: We carried out the pre-emptive strike on Balakot after we got specific intel information about fidayeen and trainers gathering at a camp. But we can not guarantee that terror attacks will not take place in future, says Defence Minister
10:14 pm: We will not wait for another Pulwama-like attack, says Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat
10:12 pm: All the three forces should be congratulated and credited, says Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat
10:09 pm: Post-Pulwama, I want to thank Indian media because a lot of technical evidences were put forth to expose Pak lies. Want to commend your reporter, says Nirmala Sitharaman in Aap Ki Adalat
10:06 pm: International community had said much, everything of which was in India's favour, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:04 pm: According to Geneva conventions, Pakistan had to send back Wing Commander Abhinandan, says Nirmala Sitharaman
10:02 pm: Have given a number of dossiers till now. What action have you taken till now, Nirmala Sitharaman asks Pakistan PM Imran Khan
10:00 pm: India TV Chairman Rajat Sharma begins posing questions to Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman