Mounting hostilities consume three more lives along IB 

Jammu: Two civilians and a BSF jawan were killed and 23 others, including 2 BSF men, were injured in heavy mortar shelling by Pakistan, along the International Border (IB), in three districts of Jammu division, officials said on Friday.

The heavy shelling took place in Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts. The Pakistani troops also violated the ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC) in Rajouri district of the Jammu region.

“Pakistan Rangers resorted to heavy firing and shelling along the IB in several areas of R S Pura, Arnia and Ramgarh sectors since 6.40 am,” a BSF official said, adding that firing was still underway when reports last came in.

The firing and shelling spread to Kathua district in the afternoon, he said.

Pakistan Rangers targeted around 45 border outposts (BoPs) in the three sectors, using 82 mm and 52 mortar bombs, automatic and small weapons, the official said, adding that the BSF troops also gave a befitting reply.

BSF Head Constable Jagpal Singh, who was injured during the exchanges in the Samba sector, succumbed to his injuries and two other jawans were also injured, a senior BSF official said.

The officials said Singh (49) hailed from Bulandshahr district of Uttar Pradesh.

Singh, posted with the Alpha company of the 173rd Battalion of the force deployed for border guarding, had joined the BSF in 1988. He is survived by a daughter and a son.

Two civilians were killed and 21 others injured, they said, adding that the two deceased were identified as Sahil (25) and Bachno Devi (50).

While nine persons were injured in Kathua district, eight were injured in Jammu district and four in Samba district, the officals said, adding that 13 of them were admitted to the GMC hospital in Jammu and the others in district hospitals.

Yesterday, a 17-year-old girl and a BSF jawan were killed and six persons, including five civilians, were injured in ceasefire violation in three sectors of Jammu and Samba districts.

With this, five persons, including two BSF jawans, were killed and 28 civilians were injured in the last two days in shelling from the Pakistani side.

The Pakistani troops also resorted to firing and shelling along the LoC in Jhangar sector of Rajouri district, forcing India to retaliate.

Over 2,000 border-dwellers have migrated. Schools along the border have been closed, the officials said.

Reacting to Paksitan’s ceasefire violations, National Conference chief Omar Abdullah told reporters here, “The NSA of India should make a phone call to the NSA of Pakistan and put an end to the ceasefire violations.”

Yesterday, Director General of BSF K K Sharma visited Jammu to pay tributes to Head Constable A Suresh, who was killed in Pakistani firing. He directed his field commanders to retaliate with full force.

“I have told them (my commanders at the ground along IB) to retaliate with full force and teach them (Pakistan Rangers) a lesson,” Sharma told a press conference here.

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