Army jawan martyred as Pak violates ceasefire at 3 places

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, Dec 31: Pakistani troops today again violated ceasefire along the Line of Con-trol (LoC) in twin border districts of Rajouri and Poonch in which an Army jawan was martyred, taking number of casualties of the Army to five during past about one week in Rajouri sector.
Reports said that Pakistani troops violated ceasefire by resorting to heavy unprovoked firing on forward Army posts at Baba Khori in Nowshera sector of Rajouri district in the wee hours of this morning.
An Army jawan was martyred in the attack. He has been identified as Sepoy Jasbir Singh. He was grievously injured in Pakistan firing, was evacuated from the spot and shifted to hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Sepoy Jasbir Singh, 32, belonged to village Lohgarh Thakran Wala in Ferozepur district of Punjab and is survived by his wife Mohinder Pal Kour, two daughters and one son.
“Sepoy Jasbir Singh was a brave and sincere soldier. The nation will always remain indebted to him for the supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty,’’ a Defence spokesman said.
Indian Army retaliated effectively, leading to exchanges for some time.
Pakistan army also opened firing at Degwar sector of Poonch district from 3.30 am to 6.30 am and Mankot, Balnoi and Ghani in Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch at 4.50 pm. However, there was no damage on the Indian side at these two places.
Pakistan was also reported to have suffered losses in retaliatory firing by the Indian side.
Amid the spurt in ceasefire violations by Pakistan, Army chief General Bipin Rawat yesterday reviewed the operational preparedness of the force here and the prevailing security situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Army chief had also visited forward posts along the LoC and interacted with soldiers in Rajouri sector, where an Army Major and three jawans were martyred by Pakistani troops on December 23.
Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed a total of 881 ceasefire violations this year, highest in the past seven years, along the LoC and the International Border resulting in the death of 34 people.
According to officials, Pakistan has violated the ceasefire along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir 771 times till December 10, and 110 times along the IB till November-end.
In these incidents of firing from across the border, 30 people — 14 Army personnel, 12 civilians and four BSF personnel — were killed.
The truce between India and Pakistan along the International Border, the Line of Control and the Actual Ground Position Line in Jammu and Kashmir came into force in November 2003.
India shares a 3,323-km-long border with Pakistan of which 221 km of the IB and 740 km of the LoC fall in Jammu and Kashmir.
In 2016, there were 449 incidents of ceasefire violations in which 13 civilians and 13 Government forces personnel were killed and 83 civilians and 99 security personnel were injured.
In 2014, there were 583 incidents of ceasefire violation in which 14 civilians and three security personnel were killed and 101 civilians and 28 security personnel were injured.
In 2015, the number of ceasefire violations was 405; 347 in 2013, 114 in 2012, 62 in 2011 and 70 in 2010.
Meanwhile, a pall of gloom descended on village Lohgarh Thakran Wala in Zira sub division in this district after the news of Sepoy Jasbir Singh’s (32) death reached here.
Singh visited his native village last week and had promised to visit again next month.
His mother Gurmit Kaur said that Singh rang up yesterday night to convey new year greetings.
“Little did we know that this will be our last conversation,” an inconsolable Gurmit Kaur said.
The soldier’s family said the couple got married in 2010, and were blessed with three kids, Nigamjit Kaur (7), Gurmeet Kaur (5) and Jagdeep Singh (2).
Singh’s last rites will be held tomorrow, Vipin Sharma, a Tehsildar, said.