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PM Modi welcomes Wing Commander Abhinandan back to India

PM Modi welcomes Wing Commander Abhinandan back to India

| @indiablooms | 01 Mar 2019, 05:38 pm

New Delhi, Mar 1 (IBNS): Prime Minister Narendra Modi welcomed Indian Air Force (IAF) pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman home after he entered the country through Wagah border late on Friday night.

"Welcome Home Wing Commander Abhinandan! The nation is proud of your exemplary courage. Our armed forces are an inspiration for 130 crore Indians. Vande Mataram!" Modi tweeted.

The IAF pilot, who was captured by Pakistan two days ago after he parachuted down from his MiG 21 jet in flames across the LoC, returned to India through the Wagah border a day after Pakistan announced to release the pilot in what it called a peace gesture amid global pressures on the neighbour to conform to international laws like Geneva Conventions.

Abhinandan arrived to a hero's welcome to India with a huge crowd gathered at the Wagah Border,  which lies on the historic Grand Trunk Road between Lahore and Amritsar in India, cheering his return.

The handing over of the IAF pilot to India by Pakistan was delayed by several hours due to "procedural delays". It finally happened well after 9pm.

The daily beating the retreat and band ceremony at the Wagah border was cancelled on Friday with captured Indian Air Force Pilot Abhinandan Varthaman scheduled to be handed over to India here this afternoon. Official formalities, however, delayed the Wing Commander's return.



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