LoC Flares Up Again: Shells Rain On Houses, Mosque In Tangdhar

  A resident looks at damaged house after cross border shelling along line of control  in Tangdar | KO File Photo

Srinagar: Several houses and a mosque were damaged as India and Pakistani troops traded heavy gunfire and mortar shells along the Line of Control (LoC) in Tangdar sector of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, officials said Thursday.

Pakistani troops opened fire and shelled mortars in unprovoked violations of a ceasefire agreement along the LoC in Kupwara district, they said.

In the Tangdhar sector of Kupwara, Pakistani troops specifically targeted mosques and houses in border villages, an Army official said in Srinagar.

"Pakistan initiated an unprovoked ceasefire violation along LoC in Tangdhar Sector, Kupwara by firing mortars and other weapons yesterday evening," the official said.

According to a local news agency KNS, five houses belonging to Altaf Ahmad Tanoli, Nazir Ahmad Tanoli, Zahir Ahmad Tanoli, Nisaar Ahmed Tanooli and Imtiyaz Ahmad Tanooli, all residents of Sadhpora were damaged in the shelling. The report also claimed that a Mosque was also partially damaged in the LoC flare-up.

Meanwhile, the two armies also exchanged gunfire along the LoC in Rajouri district of Jammu division.

In the Nowshera sector of Rajouri, Pakistan Army personnel engaged in heavy firing and mortar shelling on forward posts.

"At about 1515 hours today, Pakistan Army initiated unprovoked ceasefire violation by firing with small arms and intense shelling with mortars along LoC in Nowshera sector in Rajouri district," a defence spokesman said in Jammu.

Indian Army personnel guarding the LoC retaliated befittingly to the unprovoked ceasefire violations, officials said.

Jammu and Kashmir recorded 5,100 instances of ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the LoC in 2020 -- the highest in the past 18 years -- in which 36 people were killed and over 130 were injured, official sources said. Twenty-four security personnel were among the 36 killed.

Security forces officials said that shelling and firing by Pakistani troops was "very heavy" in 2020, virtually making the 2003 India-Pakistan border truce "redundant".

"Pakistani troops repeatedly targeted forwards posts and villages along the Line of Control (LoC) and the International Border (IB) to create a fear psychosis among the people and destabilise the peace along the borderline," a senior police officer said. (With PTI inputs)

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