India considered nuclear option against Pakistan during Kargil crisis in 1999: Former NSA Mishra

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NEW DELHI: In the midst of the Kargil war of 1999, then Prime Minister AtalBihari Vajpayee had sent a ‘secret letter’ to Bill Clinton, the US President of the day, making it clear if Pakistani infiltrators did not withdraw from the Indian territory, “we will get them out, one way or the other”, reveals This Unquiet Land Stories from India’s Fault Lines, a book by NDTV Consulting Editor Barkha Dutt. Dutt has quoted former national security advisor Brajesh Mishra as telling her in an interview: “Crossing the Line of Control (LoC) was not ruled out, nor was the use of nuclear weapons.” Dutt also writes that Indian Army had a ‘Six Day War’ contingency plan deploying troops so that the boundary separating India and Pakistan could be crossed in less than a week, if necessary. “The (Indian) army chief was blunt with the PM: ‘If we can’t undo this in Kargil, I will have to attack somewhere else.’ He made it clear that a new war front could soon be opened in another part of the subcontinent — one that, by definition, involved crossing over,” the book reveals. General V P Malik of India , after convincing PM Vajpayee , is said to have moved an army brigade from the Andaman & Nicobar Islands to the western border. Also, the Navy’s Eastern Fleet was moved from the Bay of Bengal to the Arabian Sea (NDTV).

New Delhi