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CNN report says Pakistan used JF-17 to shot down Indian plane

WASHINGTON:  Pakistan used its indigenously-made JF-17 fighter jet to shot down an Indian Airforce plane last week in Azad Kashmir, the CNN said in a report.

The JF-17 is a Chinese-designed fighter jet produced jointly by Pakistan and China in Pakistan.

“It may have been one of those jets that on Wednesday downed an Indian Air Force fighter plane, leading to the capture by Pakistan of an Indian pilot,” said the CNN report.

The report said that the downed Indian warplane was a MiG-21, a Soviet-designed aircraft. The MiG 21, which has been in service since the 1960s, forms the backbone of the Indian Air Force.

Nishank Motwani, a visiting fellow at the Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy, Acton, Australia, told CNN that Indian pilots called the plane “a flying coffin” because it had been involved in multiple accidents.

“And that illustrates a problem for India. While it has a massive military budget, a significant chunk of that goes toward maintenance of existing equipment, and salaries,” the report added.

The report included a quote from a recent inquiry by an Indian parliament committee, saying: “Modernisation gets a mere 14 per cent (of allocated funds), which is grossly inadequate.”

The US Embassy in Islamabad announced to investigate reports that Pakistan used the US-made F-16 aircraft for downing the Indian aircraft. However, Pakistan had rejected the Indian allegations that it used F-16 to bring down its plane in Kashmir.

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