kupwara: The Indian Army on Monday said that the militants killed in Keran village on Sunday were armed with modern weapons and equipment and that there are many militants waiting on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC) to cross.
Addressing a press conference, Brigadier V S Chowhan said, “On the night of 09 and 10 June, a group of heavily armed militants entered into this side of LoC where the ambush was placed and they were challenged. The militants opened a heavy volume of fire, but our troops engaged the militants resulting in an encounter; the militants tried to break the cordon, but our vigilant troops did not permit them to do so. The militants had split into two groups and over the next few hours in the early morning of 10th of June, six heavily armed militants were eliminated by our troops.
“They had modern weaponry, modern equipment, they were carrying under barrel grenade launchers and we succeeded in eliminating them without any casualties to our troops,” Brigadier Chauhan said.
He also claimed recovery of a huge quantity of arms, ammunition, food items and other equipment from the possession of the slain militants.
The recovery, the army said, includes six 7.62 mm AK-47 rifles, pistols with magazines, rounds, cartridges, UBGLs, hand grenades and other types of equipment including medicine and food items.
“The recoveries are indicative of actively aiding and abetting of this kind of a movement by Pakistan because you see a lot of food items and other equipment with Pakistan markings on them,” he said.
“As far as identification is concerned, we have not been able to identify them; these are obliviously foreign militants and their identity would be established by police and other agencies. However, the recoveries and other material carried by them, it seems the group belonged to the Lashkar-e-Toiba militant outfit,” the officer said.
“Notwithstanding, I would also like to highlight that the movement of the infiltrating column was also detected from very close to the Pakistani force across the Line of Control,” he said.
Asked about the Ramadhan ceasefire, the Brigadier said, the Army is exercising utmost restraint.
“As far as the ceasefire [goes] which has been promulgated by the government, notwithstanding that I would just like to comment that ‘Action speaks louder than words’,” he said. “And while we are respecting what has been promulgated, Pakistan obviously does not intend to do so. We had the infiltration bid over the last couple of days.”
He said that Intelligence inputs do suggest that there are a number of groups from across the border on launching pads which are waiting to infiltrate into our area.
“We expect that there will be more such bids in the future.”
He said that the troops are vigilant along LoC.
“We will foil any such bid or any such attempt. Our troops are ready to negate any such attempt,” he added.
Meanwhile, sources said that the Army had handed over all the six bodies to the local police who buried them in a nearby area in Keran with the help of local people after all legal formalities.