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Pak shells civilian areas along border, 3 killed

India's BSF soldier patrols near fenced border with Pakistan in Suchetgarh

Three persons were killed and 17 others injured when Pakistani Rangers violated the ceasefire twice and heavily shelled civilian areas and border posts along the International Border in R S Pura and Arnia sectors of Jammu district today, drawing retaliation from the BSF.

Condemning the Pakistani shelling, Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh said the international community should declare Pakistan as a “terrorist state” for engineering terror attacks on India and killing civilians in firing and shelling.

Giving details of the shelling, a BSF spokesman said that “Pakistan Rangers resorted to unprovoked firing.Initially small arms were used but later on mortars bombs were shelled on BSF posts and civilian areas in R S Pura and Arnia sectors”.

The firing and mortar shelling started around 0145 hours along the IB in Kishanpur, Jora Form, Jugnu Chak, Nawapind, Gharna, Sia, Abdullian and Chandu Chak areas in R S Pura sector and others areas in Arnia sector from 0430 hours, a police officer said.

The Pakistani troops fired mortar bombs and used automatic weapons in the firing. The shelling was so heavy that the shells landed deep inside villages much away from IB, he said.

In the shelling and firing, three civilians were killed, 17 others injured, four of them critically, the officer said adding the injured have been hospitalised.

While two persons died in R S Pura sector, one died in Arnia sector.

Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Pawan Kotwal told PTI that three persons were killed in the firing.

Scores of animals have been injured and some buildings suffered damages in the firing, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu, Samreendeep Singh said

BSF troops guarding the border retaliated, resulting in heavy exchanges which were going on when the reports last came in from the area, they said.

“BSF troops deployed in these forward areas gave a befitting reply and fired on the forward areas of Pakistan along the Line of Control, causing damage to them”, the officer said.

“No damage and casualty to BSF troops has been reported till last reports came in”, he added.

There have been 55 violations of the border ceasefire agreement by Pakistan in August and over 245 ceasefire violations during the year so far.