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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019

50 children, trapped in Pak firing in Poonch, rescued by army

The police officer informed that around 50 students, who had come to attend school in Balakote, were trapped in the shelling.

india Updated: Sep 14, 2019 20:07 IST
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Hindustan Times, Jammu
Pakistan Army started off from Balakote sector and then spread its arc of fire to Mendhar and Mankote sectors. Around 40 to 50 villages in a stretch of 50 km were affected by their shelling, an intelligence officer said.
Pakistan Army started off from Balakote sector and then spread its arc of fire to Mendhar and Mankote sectors. Around 40 to 50 villages in a stretch of 50 km were affected by their shelling, an intelligence officer said.(HT FILE PHOTO.)
         

With no let up in ceasefire violations, Pakistan on Saturday resorted to heavy fire and shot mortars on Indian posts and forward villages along the Line of Control (LoC) in Balakote, Mankote and Mendhar sectors of Poonch district, prompting India to retaliate.

“This morning around 9 am Pakistan Army opened fire and shot mortars in Balakote and then spread its arc of fire in adjoining Mankote and Mendhar sectors around 10 am. The exchanges are still on, though intermittent now,” said a police officer.

Pakistan did not even spare villagers and targeted forward villages in Balakote sector.

Also read: Pakistan army raises white flag, takes back dead soldiers from LoC: Report

The police officer informed that around 50 students, who had come to attend school in Balakote, were trapped in the shelling.

“They were shifted to safety and when shelling subsided were evacuated by the police and civil administration. They have been sent home safely,” he added.

Similar reports of small children getting trapped in their schools also poured in from other areas of Balakote sector. They too were evacuated safely and sent home.

Deputy magistrate of Poonch, Rahul Yadav said there was no report of any casualty in the Pakistani firing and the border residents have been advised to take necessary precautionary measures for their safety.

Also read: Amid protest over Kashmir, MMTC modifies tender, bars onion import from Pakistan

“Pakistan army started off from Balakote sector and then spread its arc of fire to Mendhar and Mankote sectors. Around 40 to 50 villages in a stretch of 50 km were affected by their shelling,” said an intelligence official from Mendhar.

A vehicle and cattle shed were also damaged in Balakote but there were no casualties.

On September 11, at least two Pakistani soldiers were killed in India’s retaliatory fire in Hajipur sector of PoK.

Pakistan has been regularly firing at Indian posts and villages ever since the BJP government scrapped Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir on August 5 and 6.

The move was introduced via a Presidential order in 1954 and rolled back via the same procedure.

First Published: Sep 14, 2019 15:59 IST

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