Pakistan Air Force Wing Commander Shahaz-ud-Din, whose F-16 was shot down by his Indian counterpart Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthman, has reportedly succumbed to his injuries after being beaten up by some locals thinking that he was an Indian. The Pakistani pilot had ejected after getting hit in an aerial engagement and had managed to land safely in his own territory. However, Pakistani locals thrashed him so badly that he had to be admitted in hospital, reported FirstPost.
Interestingly, Pakistan is yet to reveal his identity.
FirstPost added that like Wing Commander Varthaman, Shahaz-ud-Din also belonged to an illustrious military family. Shahaz-ud-Din’s father Waseem-ud-Din, also an Air Marshal of the Pakistan Air Force, who has flown F-16 and Mirages.
The news that Shahaz-ud-Din's plane was shot down was first reported by London-based lawyer Khalid Umar, who says he received it privately, from individuals related to the F-16 pilot’s family, the report added.
Pakistan government had earlier claimed that they have two Indian pilots in their custody. However, later they retracted from their statement and tried to hide the goof-up.
On Friday night, Varthaman, who was captured by Pakistan, was handed over to officials of the Indian High Commission at Wagah border near Lahore. Pakistan had detained him following a fierce engagement between air forces of the two sides along the Line of Control when his MiG 21 fighter jet was downed on February 27. "Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman has been handed over to us. He will now be taken for a detailed medical checkup because he had to eject from an aircraft. The IAF is happy to have him back," said Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor at Attari-Wagah border.
India on Wednesday summoned the acting high commissioner of Pakistan and demanded immediate and safe return of the IAF pilot who was detained by Pakistan following an aerial engagement by air forces of the two countries. Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing a special joint sitting of the parliament on Thursday announced that Pakistan will release the pilot.