Punjab Police home guard Jai Chand, who survived the fierce encounter between the militants and the police by hiding in the dense bushes and wild overgrowth of the Dinanagar police station remains in trauma, a day after the incident.
He was spotted by locals who had gathered on the rooftops after the encounter had ended, and the forces had taken him for a militant before intervention by his colleague Boohar Singh, who identified him, saved him from being shot dead.
Admitted at the Gurdaspur civil hospital, he recounts the horror and fear he felt during the 11-hour encounter.
"I had been on duty at the Dinanagar police station on Sunday night, which was to end at 4am. I was running a little delayed and I approached station house officer Mukhtiar Singh to ask for permission to be relieved, the three militants barged into the station and started firing indiscriminately," he said, adding that with barely any time to react, he hid in the bushes.
"Soon, heavy firing started from both the sides. I was trapped and could not dare to step out. Insects bit me, but with bullets flying all around, I preferred to stay hidden. Many bullet sharpnels and other small parts also hit me," he said, adding that by the end of the counter, he was on the verge of fainting and prayed for his life. "God heard my prayers and thus I am alive," he said.
"I thank god for saving my husband's life. He could easily have been shot dead after being mistaken for a terrorist. His friend saved him," said Jai Chand's wife Beena Devi.