Jammu & Kashmir: Baramulla/Gurez/Kupwara: In one of the deadliest ceasefire violations along the Line of Control in north Kashmir areas and also in Poonch in Jammu region, five soldiers, a BSF man and four civilians were killed while as nearly 20 people including civilians and soldiers sustained injuries on Friday.
Locals in north Kashmir’s Gurez, Uri and Nowgam sector of Kuwpara told the intensity of shelling from across and the reply by the Indian army was quite similar to what they had seen in Kargil war. They said that dozens of residential areas suffered damage and there was no idea how much livestock perished in the shelling as it was dark and majority of them had taken shelter in underground bunkers given the intensity of the mortar shells being traded by the India and Pakistani armies. Clock has stuck 8:30 and there is no letup in the firing, an elderly man said from Uri area of north Kashmir’s Baramulla district. Officials said that at least a dozen people including three soldiers and two minor girls were injured of which two are in a critical condition.
Two soldiers were killed in the intense shelling in several villages and forward areas along the Line of Control (LoC) in Gurez sector of north Kashmir’s Bandipora district, officials said.
They said that Pakistan resorted to unprovoked firing and heavy mortar shelling along the LoC in Tulail and Bagtore sectors in Gurez in which two soldiers were killed on the spot while three other received injures following which they were evacuated to hospital.
The officials said that the slain soldiers have been identified as Naik Satai Bhusha and sepoy Jon Dhale Rushikesh, both residents of Maharashtra. The injured have been identified as Naik Kale Navnath, Sepoy Khade Uddhav and Sepoy Kirte Yogesh, all residents of Maharashtra.
Another official said that there is no information yet on the damage caused to the property damage in Gurez sector as cross-LoC shelling was on till late evening. Local residents said that the low intensity shelling started at around 11:30AM and continued intermittently for some time but in the afternoon when clock ticked at 1 o clock, the intensity increased suddenly and it seemed like war had started between the two sides. After heavy shelling, several people from villages like Bagtore, Izmerg and Tulail shifted to safer places. We are fed up here, our settlements are burning each passing day because of intense shelling. Today it was like hell. We haven’t seen such an aggressive exchange of firing between the two sides,” Jabar Ahmed, a local resident, told the news agency.
In Gurez, many civilians sustained injuries. Those injured include Rehana Khursheed (14), daughter of Khursheed Ahmad Ganie, Munaza Jamsheed (12), Daughter of Jamsheed Ahamad, Jabar Ahamad Ganie (72), Son of Laasi Ganie, Sada Bagem (62) and Abdul Aziz, all residents of Bagtore, Gurez.
Three soldiers and a BSF man were killed in the aggressive exchange of gun fire, mortars and artillery at Uri area of north Kashmir Baramulla and Nowgam area of Kupwara district, officials said. At least 12 others including a minor sustained injuries in the exchange of firing at Uri and Keran sectors of north Kashmir. Officials said that three soldiers were killed in the line of action. Two slain soldiers were identified as GNR Sudoch Goush (23) and Hawaldar Hardaran Chandra (40) from 59 MED regiment who were posted at Rustam Post, Uri. The identity of third slain soldier was yet to be ascertained. Officials said that at least 12 houses suffered damage in Kamalkote, and Hajipeer sectors of Uri. Locals of Uri told that it was like war in Uri today. “We were locked inside our homes so was our livestock,” said Abdul Rashid Khatana, a resident of Dulanja, Uri. He said that they had seen such an intensive exchange of firing during Kargil War and in Indo-Pakistan war of 1965 and 1971. Khantana, 78, said that fear has gripped entire Uri and he is of the belief that civilians can’t venture out tomorrow as well due to the level of fear among them. A BSF sub-inspector was also killed in the intense shelling from across at Nougam sector of Kupwara. The slain was identified as Rakes Doval, who had sustained head injury. The four slain civilians who died due to shelling Uri area of Baramulla have been identified as Farooqa Begum (36) wife of Bashir Ahmad of Balakote, Afrar Ahmad (7) son of Latief Ahmad of Gohallan Uri, Irshad Ahmad (48) son of Karamat Hussain of Sarai Baday, Tahir Ahmad Mir (36) son of Jaleel Ahmad Mir of Sultan Daki.
Seven people including two minors sustained injuries in the intense shelling from across LoC in Sawjiyan sector on the LoC in Mandi Tehsil of Poonch district of Jammu, officials said. Officials told that said that on Friday afternoon at around 1:30 PM, when people were busy with Friday prayers, situation suddenly turned volatile as ceasefire violation started and entire area of Saujiyan sector including Saujiyan main, Gagriyan, Gali Maidan, Kopra, Chamber Kanari upto Anita post ridge, which is last LoC location on Poonch side, got rattled with intense mortar and artillery shelling.
Dozens of artillery shells fired from across fell in Saujiyan main market also with people were seen running to save their lives,” officials said. “Seven civilians got injured in shelling that include two BSF porters.” The injured were identified as 50-year-old Hajraa Begum wife of Abdul Salam from Sawjiyan, 11-year old Toseef Ahmad and seven-year-old Muhammad Rashad, sons of Meraj Din from Sawjiyan, Mohammad Afaraz son of Zaman Khan from Chapriyan Mandi, Mohammad Ibrahim son of BD Khan from Chapriyan Mandi, Kulasoom Akhter daughter of Bashir Ahmed from Gagriyan and Zareena Bi wife of Mushtaq Ahmed Dar from Gagriyan Mandi. Injured Mohammad Afraz and Mohammad Ibrahim are working with BSF as porters. Talking to KNO, Deputy Commissioner Poonch Rahul Yadav said that entire Sawjiyan area got affected with firing and shelling. Seven people were injured. Firing and shelling is still going on,” he said late this evening.
INFILTRATION BID FOILED AT KERAN
The army foiled an infiltration bid at Keran sector of Kupwara amid ceasefire violation from across the LoC, officials said. Defence Spokesman in Srinagar Colonel Rajesh Kalia said that suspicious movement was observed by own troops at the forward posts along the line of control (LoC) in Keran Sector today. “The suspected infiltration bid was foiled by alert troops. This was accompanied by initiation of an unprovoked Ceasefire Violation (CFV) by Pakistan along the LoC in Keran Sector by firing mortars & other weapons. Befitting response is being given. The CFVs spread to larger areas from Keran to Uri Sectors,” he said. This was the second infiltration attempt within a week. The earlier unsuccessful infiltration bid in Machil Sector on 7/ 8 November, was foiled, in which three militants were eliminated. Army is well poised to defeat all attempts by Pakistan to infiltrate militants into J&K. Meanwhile, internet services have been suspended in Police Division Kupwara.