BSF personnel killed, seven injured in Pak firing, shelling

BSF personnel killed, seven injured in Pak firing, shellingJAMMU: A BSF head constable was killed and seven security personnel were injured as Pakistani troops opened fire and heavily shelled over 50 border outposts along the International Border overnight, in the biggest-ever provocative act from across the border in recent times.

The heavy shelling and fresh ceasefire violation come close on the heels of Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde’s visit to areas long the IB yesterday to review the security situation arising out of ceasefire violations since October 14, in which two jawans have been killed and 18 people injured.

BSF officers said Pakistani Rangers opened fire with automatic weapons and attacked over 5O border posts (BOPs) along IB in Jammu frontier belt with mortar shells since last night.

Pakistani rangers also rained mortars in forward villages of Arnia, R S Pura and Akhnoor sectors from 7.40 PM last night, the officers said.

BSF troops guarding the border line retaliated resulting in fierce exchanges of shelling and firing, which continued till this morning, they said. The injured were hospitalized.

In the exchange of fire, Mukesh Lal Meena, a Head Constable of BSF posted in BOP Chinaj, was killed and seven BSF personnel, including two officers, were injured, they said.

Meena belongs to village Nipajipura of Mohacha in Swaimadhopur district of Rajasthan. His body is being sent to his native place.

Those injured have been identified as Inspector Rampal, Sub-Inspector Surender Singh, constables Pradeep Singh, Ashok Kumar, Manoj Kumar, Srinivas Naik, and Sandip Kumar, they said. . BSF gave a befitting reply at all the places but the damage on the Pakistan side is yet to be ascertained, the officers said.

A defense spokesman said the Pakistani troops shelled seven Indian posts along the Line of Control (LoC) in Hamirpur and Bhimber Gali sub-sectors from 2130 to 2145 hours last night and Mandi belt from 0030 hours to 0100 hours of Poonch district.

Indian troops guarding the borderline retaliated, he said, adding there was no casualty or injury to any one in the firing and shelling.

Over 140 ceasefire violations have been reported this year, the highest in the past eight years.–PTI

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