Faced with a concerted social media campaign by Pakistan, particularly aimed at one of its senior officers, the Indian Army Thursday issued a statement espousing its secular credentials.

“Having failed consistently to incite religion-based disaffection within the country, Pakistan, in a desperate attempt, is now trying to create a divide within the Indian Army. The Indian Army categorically rejects such malicious attempts to defame the institution,” a statement issued by the Army said.

The Army said Pakistan had been running a malicious social media disinformation campaign over the past few days, and had in particular targeted Lieutenant General Taranjit Singh, the deputy chief (Operations) of the Integrated Defence Staff, which is part of the Department of Military Affairs (DMA).

“The Indian Army is a secular organisation and all officers and soldiers serve the nation with pride irrespective of their religion, caste, creed or gender,” the Army stated.

The campaign includes a number of posts and videos, which speak about certain action that was taken against Lt Gen. Singh. Pakistan claims the action was taken due to his religion.

With the campaign picking up momentum over the past few days, the Army organised an interview of the senior officer with news agencies, both video as well as print, to clarify that he was fine and working from his office.

This isn’t the first time such attempts have been made by Pakistan.

The Punjab Police had in June booked Gurpatwant Singh Pannu on charges of sedition and inciting Army personnel. Pannu is considered the architect of ‘Referendum 20-20’, which advocates the secession of Punjab from India.