India, Pak Troops Trade Fire Along IB

Indian forces personnel patrolling near the line of control – File Pic

JAMMU – India and Pakistan troops on Saturday exchanged heavy gunfire along the International border in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district.

Officials said that Pakistan Rangers violated the ceasefire by resorting to unprovoked firing on forward posts and villages along the IB in Hiranagar sector.

The Border Security Force retaliated effectively, and the exchange of fire, which started around 4 am at Chakra village in Hiranagar sector, lasted for over two-and-a-half hours, according to the officials.

There was no report of any casualty on the Indian side, the officials said, adding that the Pakistan Rangers also fired dozens of mortars.

The latest ceasefire violation by Pakistan comes a day after a villager was killed and four were injured along the Line of Control in Shahpur sector of Poonch district.

Meanwhile, senior civil and police officers today visited Shahpur sector and took stock of the situation in the aftermath of Pakistani shelling that left a villager dead, officials said.

Sixty-year-old Badar Din was killed and four others were injured when Pakistan army targeted civilians while they were heading towards a mosque to offer Friday prayers in Shahpur hamlet.

District Development Commissioner, Poonch, Rahul Yadav and Senior Superintendent of Police Poonch Ramesh Angral visited the shelling-hit village and handed over a cheque of Rs 1 lakh as ex-gratia relief and Rs 10,000 out of the Red Cross fund to the next of kin of the deceased, the officials said.

The officers also inspected the mosque, which was hit by splinters during the unprovoked shelling by Pakistan, they said.

They took stock of the situation and assured all possible help to the villagers, the officials said.

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