Jammu: Three persons were killed and 16 others injured when Pakistani Rangers heavily shelled civilian areas and Army posts along the International Border in R S Pura and Arnia sectors of Jammu district today, drawing retaliation from the BSF.
“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 since midnight”, a BSF spokesman said today.
The firing and mortar shelling started around 0145 hours along the IB in Kishanpur, Jora Form, Jugnu Chak, Nawapind, harna, Sia, Abdullian and Chandu Chak areas, 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.
Deputy Commissioner Jammu, Simrandeep Singh said two persons are dead and 16 others were injured. He said there were reports that another person has also been killed in the firing.
However, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Pawan Kotwal told PTI that three persons were killed in the firing. BSF troops guarding the border retaliated resulting in heavy exchanges which are going on when the reports last came in from the area, they said.
“Undeterred and resolute BSF troops deployed in these forward post areas gave a befitting reply and fired on the forward areas of Pakistan along the Line of Control, reportedly, causing damage to them”, the officer said.
“No damage and casualty to BSF troops on own side has been reported till the last reports came in”, he added. There have been 55 violations of the border ceasefire agreement of 2003 by Pakistan in August and over 245 ceasefire violations during the year so far.
Pakistani Rangers had pounded civilian areas and military positions along the International Border (IB) in R S pura and Arnia sectors of Jammu district on the intervening night of August 17-18, injuring a villager.
On the intervening night of August 16-17, Pakistan troops had resorted to ceasefire violations in Saujiyan and Mandi sectors of Poonch district and shelled forward posts and civilian areas with 120 mm and 82 mm mortar bombs and heavy machine guns (HMGs).
On August 16, a woman was killed and five persons were injured as Pakistani troops fired 120 mm and 82 mm mortars bombs, HMGs and RPGs on border posts and civilian areas in Poonch and Rajouri districts.
On Independence Day, six civilians, including a sarpanch were killed and five others injured in heavy firing and mortar bomb shelling by Pakistani troops at several Indian posts and civilian areas.
Last month, there were 19 ceasefire violations in which four persons, including three jawans, were killed and 14 others injured.