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Tariq Bhat
Tariq Bhat

BORDER TENSION

Officer, three soldiers killed in Pakistan firing on LoC

army-security-forces-file-pti Representative image

Four soldiers, including an officer, were killed and six others injured after Pakistan Army resorted to heavy firing on the Line of Control (LoC) at Rajouri and in Jammu on Sunday. Those injured include three soldiers, a BSF sub-inspector and two civilians.

Deputy Commissioner of Rajouri Shahid Iqbal Choudhary tweeted: “One officer and three soldiers martyred in Rajouri. All areas affected due to ceasefire violations''

The Indian Army was giving a befitting reply and heavy exchanges were on, officials said.

Heavy firing was reported from Manjakote, Basooni, Panjani, Drati in Balakote, Shahpur and Kerni.

The injured civilians were identified as Shahnaz Bano (15) and Yasin Arif (14), residents of Islamabad village.

In January, six security force personnel and eight civilians were killed after Pakistan fired at Indian positions along the International Border in Jammu at RS Pura, Kuthua, and Samba.

The firing forced more than 50000 people to migrate to safer places.

The BSF later held a flag meeting with Pakistani Rangers and warned them of serious consequences in case the firing on the civilians and snipping off the BSF men at the border didn't end.

While there were no ceasefire violations by Pakistan reported along the IB since January 22, intermittent shelling has taken place along the LoC.

The latest killing of soldiers at the LoC comes at a time when  Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday said the forces have been ordered to fire countless bullets in retaliation of a bullet from Pakistani side.

“I have given standing orders to our forces to shoot limitless bullets to retaliate a single fire on our territory by the Pakistani forces,” Singh said at an election rally in Barjala, Agartala.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba  Mufti said she was pained to hear about the killing of the soldiers.

The Army has made generous use of heavy caliber weapons like artillery, anti-tank guided missiles, deadly air burst and heavy automatic weapons.

Authorities in Poonch issued an advisory asking people to stay inside their homes.

"All 84 schools located in 0-5 km from the LoC stretch from Sunderbani to Manjakote shall remain closed for the next three days," Choudhary said.

Officials said the situation was very tense as firing and shelling by Pakistani troops continued round the clock.

With inputs from agencies

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Topics : #ceasefire | #border

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