Srinagar: India and Pakistan troops on Thursday exchanged heavy small arms and mortar fire along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district.
No casualties were reported.
Defence spokesman Lt. Col. Devender Anand said in Jammu that Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire agreement by initiating unprovoked shelling of mortars and firing by small arms in Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch.
The shelling and firing, he said, started at 6 am and continued for one hour. “Indian troops retaliated strongly and effectively. Firing stopped around 7 am,” he said.
Cross-LoC shelling and firing resumed in Krishna Ghathi sector of Poonch in the afternoon. The Army said Pakistani troops again resorted to unprovoked firing and shelling at 1 pm and that the Indian troops were responding to it “strongly and befittingly”.
On Wednesday, the Army had destroyed at least five forward posts of the Pakistan army along the LoC in Poonch and neighbouring Rajouri district.
The action, it said, was taken in retaliation to “unprovoked” and “indiscriminate” firing and shelling by the Pakistani troops in violation of the November 2003 ceasefire understanding.
Defence spokesperson Lt. Col. Anand had said there was firing on Tuesday too and it resulted in several casualties on the Pakistani side.
He also said the Pakistani troops initiated unprovoked ceasefire violation by shelling with heavy calibre weapons at 12 to 15 places along the LoC from 6.30 pm (Wednesday) onwards. Pakistani troops were also seen “firing mortars and missiles from civilian houses using villagers as human shields,” he claimed.
The areas affected by the Pakistani firing on Tuesday and Wednesday included Krishna Gate, Balakote, Mankote, Karmara and Tarkundi areas of Poonch and Kalal, Baba Khori, Kalsian, Laam and Jhangar in Rajouri. Cross border clashes were reported also from Pallanwala and Laleali sub-sectors in Akhnoor sector of Jammu district.
The two sides clashed also in Kamalkote area of Uri. A few Pakistani shells landed in Kamalkote nallah and near Kaalgi village of Uri. No casualties were reported on the Indian side, reports said.
Meanwhile, schools in the five kilometres area from the LoC in Poonch, Rajouri, Samba and Jammu districts have been closed “as a precautionary measure” in view of the cross-border firing amid rising tensions between India and Pakistan....