Ceasefire violation in Poonch, two Pakistani soldiers killed in ‘retaliation’
Two Pakistani soldiers were reported killed, as Indian forces retaliated to “unprovoked firing” by Pakistani troops at two different areas along the Line of Control in Poonch district through Wednesday night.india Updated: Sep 29, 2016 15:53 IST
Two Pakistani soldiers were reported killed, as Indian forces retaliated to “unprovoked firing” by Pakistani troops at two different areas along the Line of Control in Poonch district through Wednesday night.
The guns fell silent around 8 am on Thursday morning.
“There was a ceasefire violation by Pakistan in Balnoi sector in Poonch (250 km northwest of Jammu), a defence source said. “The firing started around 2.30 am on Thursday. The Army returned the fire.”
Officially, the Northern Command is tight-lipped on the matter.
The two truce violations by Pakistan led Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold a Cabinet Committee on Security meeting on Thursday, and review the situation. On its part, the BSF stepped up security all along the 198-km international border.
The Indian army has, in a bid to prevent possible infiltration by Pak ultras in the cover of fire from the Pakistani side, cordoned the entire area. A search operation has been launched, sources added.
A police officer confirmed that a vast area near the LoC was cordoned off in Balnoi village of Mendhar in Poonch district after the heavy exchange of fire between the armies of India and Pakistan in the small hours of Thursday.
Pakistan’s official media site ISPR claimed that around 2.30 am, India opened unprovoked fire in Bhimber, Hot Spring, Kel and Lipa areas on their side of the LoC, killing two soldiers.
On Wednesday evening, Pakistani army had violated the ceasefire agreement and opened fire on Indian positions along the 744-km LoC in Saujiyan sector of Poonch district.
At 5.33 pm on Wednesday, Pakistani troops opened fire on Indian posts, prompting Indian soldiers to respond. A gun-battle continued till 6.20 pm, after which there was a lull of 10 minutes. It resumed again and went till 8.30 pm on Wednesday.
Then, in Balnoi, a gun-battle started around 2.30 am on Thursday.
On September 18, Pakistan orchestrated an attack on an army base in Uri close to the LoC, killing 18 Indian soldiers.
First Published: Sep 29, 2016 12:58 IST