India, Pak trade fire in Rajouri; jawan killed

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 8/18/2019 3:25:30 AM

JAMMU, Aug 17: An army jawan was killed on Saturday as Pakistan shelled forward posts and villages along the Line of Control (LoC) in Nowshera sector of Rajouri district.
PRO Defence Lt Col Devender Anand, while confirming ceasefire violation by Pakistan, stated, “Lance Naik Sandeep Thapa (35), a resident of village Rajawala in Sahaspur district of Dehradun, sustained fatal injuries in the Pakistani firing in Nowshera sector of Rajouri district. This prompted strong response from the Indian army which inflicted casualties and heavy damage to Pakistan army posts opposite Nowshera sector.”
Lt Col Anand said, “The unprovoked firing from across the border started at around 6.30 AM and continued intermittently throughout the day. Pakistan army resorted to mortar shelling and small arms firing on forward posts and villages along the Line of Control. Indian army responded strongly and effectively. Heavy damage to Pakistan army posts and casualties to Pakistan soldiers have been inflicted by our troops.”
The exchange of fire between the two sides continued till late evening, he said, adding the casualties suffered by Pakistan in the retaliatory action was not known immediately.
The latest ceasefire violation comes two days after Pakistan claimed that its four soldiers were killed in firing by Indian troops on their posts along the LoC. Pak army had also claimed to have killed five Indian soldiers, however, this claim was rubbished by Indian army, which described it as, “fictitious.”
“Lance Naik Thapa, who is survived by his wife Nisha Thapa, was a brave, highly motivated and sincere soldier. The nation will always remain indebted to him for the supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty," Lt Col Anand said.
Last month, two army personnel and a 10-day-old baby were killed and several civilians injured in heavy Pakistani shelling and firing in the twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri in Jammu region.
In the meanwhile, Indian army during the intervening night of Thursday-Friday claimed to have foiled multiple infiltration attempts by militants backed by the Pakistani army.
Army sources had said on Friday that to push terrorists from multiple points inside Indian territory, Pakistan has activated a major communication hub in Kali Ghati area near Neelam Valley in Pakistan Administered Kashmir (PAK) to facilitate militants trying to infiltrate. The communication hub with a range of 50-60 kilometres, allows militants to communicate with their guides even across the LoC.
“Indian army positions on the Line of Control have been alerted to prevent any misadventure by Pakistan army,” sources added.
On Thursday, Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Ranbir Singh had said that Pakistan was trying to push in infiltrators in last few days. The developments come in the wake of Central government's decision to scrap Article 370 which gave special status to Jammu Kashmir.



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