India says that Pakistan was behind the planning and implementation of several terrorist attacks on India.

India apparently failed to retaliate on each occasion (except for what seems to be a Surgical Strike and backup).

Possible actions might have included (my guesses):

  • Filing complains to the UNSC to put sanctions on Pakistan.
  • Suing Pakistan in the International Court of Justice.
  • Invading Karachi (as Karachi is Pakistan's trade capital like Mumbai).
  • Stopping trade with Pakistan.
  • Expelling diplomats or even shutting down Pakistani embassy in New Delhi.

Why couldn't/didn't India take any action on Pakistan for perpetrating several said terrorist attacks?

  • 2
    Do you have an Indian source actually claiming state of Pakistan perpetrated these attacks? The links you've given all seem to claim Pakistani backing or incitement, rather than direct action.
    – origimbo
    Commented Apr 25, 2018 at 20:10
  • @origimbo, what is the difference between Pakistan perpetrated the terror attack ... and ... Terrorists sent by Pakistan perpetrated the terror attack? ... Also ... livemint.com/Politics/cLZVQ96SQPTmyTE3DlqaXJ/…
    – user17569
    Commented Apr 25, 2018 at 20:19
  • 1
    The usual phrase is "plausible deniability", plus the current international preference for proportionate response.
    – origimbo
    Commented Apr 25, 2018 at 20:26

1 Answer 1


Two of the examples you linked led to military action, many casualties and nearly war. India did not seem to blame Pakistan for the other two, however, and is likely why little action was taken.

2001 Parliament Attack: India blamed the attack on two Pakistan-based terrorist groups, and their response to this attack was the largest mobilization of their forces since the 1971 war between the two countries. Various border clashes resulted in thousand of casualties, India expelled the Pakistani ambassador in response to an attack on an army camp, and both sides had their nuclear weapons at the ready.

2008 Mumbai Attack: I couldn't find whether or not India blamed Pakistan for this one, though Indian and Pakistani police worked together at times to exchange evidence and arrest those involved in the plot. Clearly there was at least some initial trust between the two nations, and is likely why no action was taken even if India later blamed Pakistan.

However, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said in 2009 that he did believe Pakistan did enough to prosecute those involved, though this is far short of outright blaming them for the attack itself.

2016 Uri Attack: A military operation, similar but on a much smaller scale than the one in 2001, occurred in response to this attack.

Details are sketchy because both sides boasted about their actions and downplayed the other's. However, if we take the lower of each sides' claim then there was at least 100 casualties as a result of several border clashes.

2016 Pathankot Attack: As with the Mumbai attacks, I couldn't find any claim of direct blame on Pakistan. In a speech after the attack, Prime Minister Narendra Modi blamed "enemies of humanity" and not Pakistan. India and Pakistan proceed with diplomatic talks which were delayed by the attack, and presumably these talks would have been canceled in India believed Pakistan orchestrated an attack.


You must log in to answer this question.