Srinagar: Two Army soldiers, who were critically injured when Pakistani troops violated ceasefire from across the LoC in frontier Kashmir district of Baramulla on Friday, succumbed in the wee hours on Saturday.
Defence Ministry spokesperson Colonel Rajesh Kalia told UNI that Pakistani troops resorted to unprovoked shelling along the Line of Control (LoC) in Rampur sector at around 1530 hrs on Friday, resulting in injuries to three soldiers. “Indian army is retaliating befittingly,” he said, adding the injured were hospitalised.
He said the injured were rushed to Army’s 92 base hospital in Srinagar. However, he said after battling for their lives for several hours, two soldiers succumbed in the wee hours on Saturday.
He said Army salutes to the supreme sacrifice made by these soldiers at the LoC.
Pakistani troops, violating the 2003 ceasefire, also fired mortar shells on Friday at around 1230 hrs, targeting forward posts and civilian areas in Uri sector, official sources said.
They said Indian troops retaliated and the exchange of fire lasted for over an hour. “Two girls, identified as Shanaza Bano and Thaira Bano, were injured in the shelling,” they said, adding the wounded were rushed to a hospital.
Pakistan has been violating ceasefire frequently in north Kashmir.
Pakistani troops violated ceasefire in Uri sector on April 27 though no one was injured. Three civilians, including a woman and child, were killed on April 12 when Pakistan troops violated ceasefire in Kupwara. Five heavily-armed militants and as many soldiers were killed in an encounter which ensued after alert troops foiled a major infiltration bid from PoK in Keran sector on April 5.
Official sources said that Pakistan troops are violating ceasefire to facilitate militants to infiltrate into Kashmir valley. “A large number of militants are waiting at launch pads in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) to sneak into this side,” they said.
However, they said despite facing all odds, Indian troops remained on high alert along the Line of Control (LoC) to foil any militant attempt to infiltrate into this side.
There were a total of 646 incidents of ceasefire violation along the International Border (IB) as well as the LoC between January 1 and February 23 this year, an official said.
He said over 3,200 ceasefire violations by Pakistan’s troops were recorded in 2019