An Indian border guard of Border Security Force (BSF) was killed and six others wounded in skirmishes with Pakistani border guards on the international border in Kashmir, officials said today.
The border guards targeted each other in R S Pura, Arnia, Ramgarh and Akhnoor sectors last night using heavy artillery and mortars, and the exchange continued until this morning.
“One BSF man was killed and six to seven others were wounded after Pakistani Rangers violated ceasefire and targeted our posts,” said Vinod Yadav, a spokesman for BSF. “Our side also retaliated effectively.”
Reports said border guards of the two nuclear neighbors exchanged fire at 50 locations along the international border, raining shells on each other.
The skirmishes came hours after India’s Home Minister Shushilkumar Shinde visited the restive region to review security along the line-of-control (LoC) and international border (IB).
Locals said the overnight skirmish was the biggest ceasefire violation so far in the past several days. The panic-stricken villagers at Jasso Chak and S M Pur fled from their houses for safer places.
Skirmishes between troops posted on the LoC have been going on almost on daily basis since Aug. 6, with the majority of exchanges taking place on the LoC in Poonch. However for the past several days similar skirmishes are going on also along the IB in the region.
Both sides have suffered troop as well as civilian casualties during the standoff on the 720 km long LoC and 198 km long IB.
LoC is a de facto border that divides Kashmir into India and Pakistan controlled parts.