Soldier killed, 4 injured in cross-LoC shelling
Jammu, Apr 03 : An Army soldier was killed while four others including a lieutenant were injured as Indian and Pakistani troops traded mortar bombs at forward posts along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district today, officials said.
“The cross-border shelling by Pakistani troops started in Krishna Ghati sector this morning and continued for over two hours, resulting in injuries to five soldiers including an officer,” an Army officer said.
One of the injured soldiers later succumbed to injuries at the military hospital.
The deceased soldier was identified as 20-year-old Sepoy Mustapure Shubham Suryakant, a resident of Konerwadi village in Parbhani district of Maharashtra.
“The nation will always remain indebted to him for his supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty,” defence spokesman Col. N N Joshi said.
A police official said a lieutenant and two junior commissioned officers were among the injured and they were evacuated to command hospital in Udhampur district for specialised treatment.
Col. Joshi said that Pakistan Army “initiated unprovoked and indiscriminate firing” from 0700 hours using small arms, automatic weapons and mortar shells.
“Indian Army has retaliated strongly, effectively and proportionately to the unprovoked ceasefire violation,” he said.
This is for the third straight day that Indian and Pakistani troops have traded fire in the twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri.
However, the shelling failed to have any impact on cross-LoC trade which takes place for four days a week from Tuesday to Friday along the Chakan Da Bagh in Poonch district and Salamabad in Uri sector of Baramulla district.
Dozens of trucks from either side crossed the border from the trade facilitation centres, the officials said.
With the latest killing, the death toll in the Pakistani shelling along the LoC this year has gone up to 27.
The dead included 13 security personnel and five members of a family who lost their lives when a shell hit their house in Balakote sector of Poonch district on March 18.
India says Pakistani troops have “violated the ceasefire” along the LoC and the International Border over 650 times this year.