Soldier killed, another wounded in Pakistani shelling in Nowshera
Pakistan has been continuously violating the 2003 ceasefire agreement with India, and the firing and shelling has left the hapless villagers in a precarious situation.Updated: Jun 16, 2017 18:10 IST
A soldier was killed and another injured in Pakistani shelling along the Line of Control (LoC) in Nowshera sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district on Friday morning, officials said.
The dead soldier was identified as 34-year-old Naik Bakhtawar Singh of 8 Sikh Light Infantry, and a resident of Hajipur village in Punjab’s Hoshiyarpur district.
“Pakistan Army opened heavy fire around 4am and the exchange lasted for around 20 minutes. During brief exchanges, two Indian soldiers were injured at Kalsian. One of them died around 5am,” an intelligence official said.
Nowshera sub-divisional magistrate Harbans Lal Sharma and Nowshera police station head Kuldip Krishan confirmed that the soldier died around 5am when he was hit by a mortar shell at a forward post in Kalsian area of Nowshera sector.
Defence spokesman Lt Col Manish Mehta said the Pakistan Army initiated unprovoked firing on Indian Army posts in Nowshera sector around 0515 hours on Friday morning.
The Indian Army retaliated strongly and effectively, and in the exchange of fire, Bakhtawar Singh was grievously injured and succumbed to his injuries while being evacuated to the military hospital, he said.
Bakhtawar Singh is survived by his wife, Jasbir Kaur, and three minor children.
A wreath-laying ceremony will be held in Rajouri on Saturday. The soldier’s body will be taken to his native village where the last rites will take place with full military honours.
“Naik Bakhtawar Singh was a brave and sincere soldier. He loved his job to the core. The nation will always remain indebted to him for the supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty,” said Lt Col Mehta.
The identity of the injured soldier has not been ascertained yet.
Since May 1, when Pakistan’s BAT killed and mutilated two Indian soldiers — JCO Paramjit Singh and BSF head constable Prem Sagar in Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch — there have been firing incidents along the LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts.
Three civilians — Akhter Bi, Tuffail Hussain, Asyia Bi — and army man Bakhtawar Singh have been killed, and 11 people, including five soldiers, have been injured, all in Nowshera sector.
Pakistan has been continuously violating the 2003 ceasefire agreement with India, and the firing and shelling has left the hapless villagers in a precarious situation. Nearly 3,000 villagers continue to put up in five relief camps set up in Nowshera.
First Published: Jun 16, 2017 14:14 IST