The NSG commandos made extensive use of their special weapons like MP-5 assault rifles, Glock pistols, corner-shot guns and a heavy cache of door and wall-busting explosive charges to eliminate terrorists. (Associated Press photo)
The commandos of elite National Security Guard used 'buster' ammunition tools, the most sophisticated assault weapon, to neutralise the terrorists during the military operations at the Pathankot air base, sources said today.
According to the sources, it was a 'New Year call' to the NSG's 24x7 'on alert' counter-terrorist unit based in Manesar sometime in the afternoon on January 1 when 300 commandos were flown to Pathankot around 3 in the afternoon.
The call to air-dash to Pathankot was made by the Union Home Ministry to the NSG headquarters, which quickly asked its Force Commander in Manesar to prepare a team for an assault.
The first team was led by NSG Inspector General (Operations) Major General Dushyant Singh even as Director General RC Tayal camped in Pathankot from Sunday.
Two more similar special strike units, with strength of about 80 commandos each, were airlifted to Pathankot from Delhi on January 2 and January 3.
The sources said the NSG commandos made extensive use of their special weapons like MP-5 assault rifles, Glock pistols, corner-shot guns and a heavy cache of door and wall-busting explosive charges to corner and eliminate the holed-up terrorists.
They said the 'buster' tools, as they are called, were also used during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks when the NSG used them to blow off locked rooms and passages of five-star hotels but some of them used this time were the enhanced variants which the force has procured post the Mumbai operation.
Two terrorists, the sources said, were killed by the NSG men when they were hiding and launching continuous fire and lobbing grenades from a room where the family quarters of the Defence Security Corps (DSC) is located in the airbase. The room was later demolished by the use of heavy fire.
In one of the longest running counter-terror operations in the country, the NSG suffered minor and major injuries to its 21 personnel, besides the death of its bomb squad Commanding Officer Lt Col EK Niranjan, since the first detachment of about 160 commandos flew out from the Palam military airbase on January 1 on an IAF transport aircraft.