Kupwara: At least three civilians, including a little boy and a woman who had five children, were killed and several were injured on Sunday afternoon in cross-border shelling in Kupwara in north Kashmir. Many houses of civilians were also damaged in the shelling.
Sources said that armies of India and Pakistan exchanged heavy gunfire in Karnah and Keran sectors of Kupwara district on Sunday afternoon, targeting the posts of each other. After the gunfire, both the armies fired mortars and artillery in the two sectors.
They said that shells fired from across the border hit several structures in Chokibal and Tumna villages, due to which panic spread among residents of Karnah-Tangdar, Keran, Chokibal and of other areas with people in large numbers running towards safer places.
Three civilians – Shameena Begum, wife of Ghulam Mohammad Hajam and mother of five children; Javeed Ahmed Khan, son of Ghulam Rasool of Reddi Chowkibal village; and 4-year-old Zeshan Bashir, son of Bashir Ahmad of Tumna village, were killed when shells hit the area. Several other people were injured and many residential houses were damaged in several villages, sources in the area said.
The sources said that teams of Kupwara police rushed to the rescue and help of civilian people in the affected areas.
SSP Kupwara AS Dinkar confirmed to Kashmir Reader that ceasefire violation had taken place in both Keran and Karnah sectors in the afternoon. He said that teams of Jammu and Kashmir police were rushed to the areas for help of civilian people.
Two days ago, the armies had exchanged heavy artillery in Keran sector in which a residential house was damaged and a woman was injured. A week ago, five militants and five Indian Army soldiers killed in a deadly gunfight in the same sector. Since then, there has been a marked increase in hostility along the Loc in Kupwara.
The cross-border firing and shelling was still going on when this report was filed.
The Indian Army said in a statement that Pakistan violated the ceasefire in Keran sector and targeted several civilian areas along the LoC, in which three innocent civilians including a lady and a child were killed.