As war tensions between India and Pakistan are soaring, an Indian nuclear submarine attempted to enter Pakistani waters but found itself pushed out by the Pakistan Navy. India had tried to send its nuclear-powered submarine into Pakistani waters in what appears to be an attempt to provoke Pakistan to a military stand-off. But the Pakistan Navy successfully intercepted the submarine before it entered its marine territory.

India Nuclear Submarine Pakistan
Image source: Samaa TV

The Pakistan Navy has once again “proved its vigilance and operational competence” by preventing the Indian submarine from entering Pakistani waters, according to the Pakistan Army’s press office. Pakistan Navy Fleet units detected and localized India’s nuclear submarine, which may have been spying south of the Pakistani coast. Pakistanis noted that the submarine had made “desperate” attempts to escape detection but was eventually pushed out of Pakistani waters.

“This is a proof of Pakistan Navy’s extremely skilled anti-submarine warfare unit,” the Pakistani Army’s press release stated on Friday.

The incident took place on November 14 but wasn’t reported until Friday.

Pakistan warns it will respond to India’s nuclear submarine

In the press release, Pakistan warned that it remains vigilant and fully prepared to respond to India’s aggression. Hours after the press release was published, India denied Pakistan’s claim of detecting and chasing away its nuclear submarine.

The nuclear submarine that was pushed out of Pakistani waters is one more indication that India continues making attempts to destabilize the situation. On Monday, India’s unprovoked firings along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir resulted in the deaths of seven Pakistani soldiers. Pakistanis responded to the aggression and killed 11 of India’s soldiers, according to Pakistani Army Chief Raheel Sharif on Wednesday.

However, India strongly denies the accusations and claims that “no fatal casualties” took place along the LoC between November 14 and 16.

Sharif said, “The Indian Army should man up and own up the loss of lives of its personnel.”

The Army chief claims Pakistanis have killed “40-44 Indian troops” in the current clashes. Pakistan views India’s recent violations as a means of diverting the world’s attention away from the atrocities committed by Indian forces in the disputed Kashmir region.

Some Pakistanis believe that India’s increasing aggression is designed to drag their country into a direct military confrontation. India’s “No First Use” policy on nuclear weapons means it won’t unleash war against Pakistan unless attacked by it.

Pakistan steps up war games to scare off India

The incident with India’s nuclear submarine took place at a time when Chinese ships were also docked at the Karachi port to take part in their joint drills with Pakistan.

Pakistan seems to have ramped up its military drills lately. On Wednesday, Pakistanis carried out the Raad ul Barq (Strike of Thunder) drills along the border with India. During the military exercise near the border with its nuclear-armed neighbor, Pakistan showed off its ability to perform synchronized military operations with armored regiments.

The drills, which are viewed as a direct indication of the Pakistani Army’s readiness to deal with any military threat from India, also revealed that Pakistan has Chinese-made WZ-10 Thunderbolt attack helicopters in its possession. The WZ-10 Thunderbolt is China’s most advanced attack helicopter since 2012. The Chinese made the helicopter to counter the American AH-64 Apache attack helicopter.

Pakistan secretly purchases China’s attack helicopters

Interestingly, Pakistan has never publicly admitted to purchasing the WZ-10 Thunderbolt helicopters from China. However, last year a series of such helis was reportedly transferred to Pakistan for performance evaluation.

The secrecy in Pakistan-China relations serves as a yet another indication of the close military friendship between the two nations. China, which is currently developing a newer attack helicopter, the WZ-16, has been Pakistan’s ally for decades and has repeatedly pledged to protect Islamabad from any foreign aggression.

Pakistan’s newly-purchased WZ-10 Thunderbolt is powered with missiles and is capable of destroying tanks and fortified positions. The China-made choppers are a powerful addition to Pakistan’s impressive fleet of AH-1F Cobra helicopter gunships and 15 new AH-1Z Viper helicopters.

Last year, Pakistan also purchased four Mi-35 attack helicopters from Russia. Pakistan and Russia have been enjoying warm economic, military and diplomatic ties lately, with many speculating about the possible China-Russia-Pakistan superpower triangle.

Last month, Russia and Pakistan held their first-ever joint military drills. Despite the fact that Moscow and Islamabad were Cold War adversaries, Russia seems to have chosen Pakistan, China’s traditional ally, over India, even though Moscow is New Delhi’s key weapons supplier.

Pakistan’s war games on Indian border

Pakistan’s war games on the border with India were held close to the town of Bahawalpur in Punjab province. Even Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif attended the drills, along with General Raheel Sharif. Last week, Sharif went public with his warnings to India, saying that New Delhi shouldn’t misinterpret Islamabad’s restraint as “weakness” and added that Pakistan is capable of responding to India’s aggression.

Tensions between the two nuclear-powered enemies took a turn for the worst when New Delhi accused Pakistan-based militants of killing 19 Indian soldiers in the disputed Kashmir region in September. Pakistan, meanwhile, claims India has intensified its ceasefire violations along the LoC, with Monday’s deaths of seven Pakistani soldiers becoming an unusually high death toll after months of deteriorating tensions between the two nations.

September’s attack took place days before PM Sharif was set to address the United Nations General Assembly on alleged Indian human rights violations in the Kashmir region.

India and Pakistan relying on alliances

Since the September attack, India has ramped up its efforts to isolate Pakistan and make it a pariah state, claiming that Islamabad is a “launch pad of terror.” Hours after September’s attack at the Uri army base, Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh termed Pakistan a “terrorist state.” Pakistan strongly rejects the claims.

Despite Pakistan’s warnings, India has allegedly intensified its ceasefire violations in the past few weeks. Pakistan and India have been relying on their diplomatic efforts and potential alliances lately. With India recently signing a historic nuclear deal with Japan, Pakistan has been curling up to China, Russia and Turkey. Earlier this week, Moscow announced that trilateral China-Russia-Pakistan talks will be held next month. That means the three nuclear-armed nations could potentially form their alliance as soon as next month.