Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman had shot down a Pakistani F-16 plane before his MiG-21 Bison was hit during a dogfight.
Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer of the F-16 fighter jets, on Saturday rejected a Pakistani official’s remark that it was going to sue India for “wrongly claiming” that one of its planes was shot down by MiG-21 Bison during an aerial fight in Jammu and Kashmir on February 27. “Lockheed Martin has made no such comments,” the Indian subsidiary of the American defence major replied in response to Pakistan censor board chairman Danyal Gilani’s tweet.
Responding to the company, Gilani in his defence said: “I acknowledge the statement is wrongly attributed to you. I picked it from a website. However, I stand by Govt of India’s failure to prove it downed a Pakistani F-16 jet.”
Lockheed Martin has made no such comments.— Lockheed Martin India (@LMIndiaNews) March 1, 2019
Thank you @LMIndiaNews. I acknowledge the statement is wrongly attributed to you. I picked it from a website. I take it back. However, I stand by Govt of #India's failure to prove it downed a #Pakistani F-16. Indian media & journalists have caught #Indian govt disinformation.— Danyal Gilani (@DanyalGilani) March 2, 2019
Many Pakistani media outlets have been reporting that Lockheed Martin would file a case against India for downing its jet.
Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 1,05,000 people worldwide. It is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.
Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman shot down a Pakistani F-16 plane before his MiG-21 Bison was hit during a dogfight. He was then captured by Pakistani authorities.
Varthaman brought to Delhi after Pakistan released him through the Attari-Wagah border on Friday night. He then underwent a series of medical tests as part of a "cooling down" process, officials said. Early Saturday morning, Varthaman met his immediate family members as well as several top officials of the Indian Air Force, they said.
Varthaman arrived in the national capital around 11:45 PM Friday and soon after he was taken to the Air Force Central Medical Establishment (AFCME), a compact and specialised medical evaluation centre for aircrew of all the three services.
The handing over of pilot Abhinandan Varthaman to India at Wagah was delayed on Friday as he was asked to record a statement on camera by Pakistani authorities before he was allowed to cross the border, according to sources. It was not clear whether he was made to record the video under duress. The video also had several jump cuts indicating that it had been edited heavily, apparently to fit Pakistani propaganda.