Two soldiers killed fighting Pakistani infiltrators on the New Year day
The new year started on a sombre note with two Indian Army soldiers losing their lives in an exchange of fire with Pakistani militants, who were looking to sneak into India through the Line of Control (Loc) in Jammu and Kashmir in the wee hours on Wednesday. The heavily armed militants’ advance was foiled by the security forces in the cordon and search operation in the Kalal area of the Nowshera sector in Rajouri.
“In the intervening night of Tuesday, a contact was established with infiltrators in a forest Rakh Taryath in Nowshera Sector. The heavily armed terrorists retaliated by fire. In the ensuing exchange of fire, two soldiers of the Indian Army were critically injured and later succumbed to their injuries and attained martyrdom, said Public Relations Officer, Defence, Lt Col Devender Anand.
Reinforcements have been summoned for the operation, which was still in progress at the time of the publishing of this report.
The deceased have been identified as Naik Sawant Sandip Raghunath (29) from Munde village in Karhad tehsil of Satara, Maharashtra and Rifleman Arjun Thapa Magar (25), from Nepal’s Gorkha district.
Sandeep Raghunath is survived by his wife Smita Sawant and Thapa Magar left his wife Sarita Thapa Magar behind.
The defence spokesperson said both Naik Raghunath and Rifleman Magar were “brave, highly motivated and sincere soldiers” whose “supreme sacrifice” and “devotion to duty” had left the nation in debt.
According to Jammu and Kashmir police, eighty-three security personnel had lost their lives in anti-terror operations in Jammu and Kashmir in 2018.
The J&K police yesterday said there were 250 militants active in the union territory, of which 100 were foreigners and the rest were locals.
General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Army’s northern command Lt Gen Ranbir Singh visited the forward bases and posts along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir on New Year day and reviewed operational preparedness.