LoC tense as Pak bid to regain lost posts in Akhnoor foiled

File photo of Spike ATGM.
File photo of Spike ATGM.

Army to deploy 210 Spike ATGMs in J&K

3 Pak troops killed in heavy firing

Sanjeev Pargal
JAMMU, Nov 25: Pakistan army is reported to have suffered heavy losses on the Line of Control (LoC) in Akhnoor sector in its attempt to regain some of the lost posts as Indian troops retaliated to Pakistan firing very effectively today.
The development comes at a time when the Indian Army was in the process of deploying recently acquired Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles along the LoC with Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir.
Reports said Pakistan army resorted to heavy firing on the Indian positions on the LoC between Khour and Pallanwalla in Akhnoor sector at 4 am and again at 9 pm tonight and tried to regain some of the posts they had lost earlier in retaliatory firing and shelling by the Indian troops.
Aware of Pakistani plans, the Indian Army again retaliated effectively and thwarted Pakistani plot to regain their lost posts twice during the day today. Though there was no official word, at least three Pakistan army personnel were reported to have been killed and two others injured in the Indian retaliation.
Heavy exchange of firing between the two sides continued for about two hours in the morning, reports said, adding that there were no casualties or damage on the Indian side.
There was no official confirmation about number of posts the Pakistan army has lost in their forward areas on the LoC between Khour and Pallanwalla in Akhnoor sector.
However, official sources confirmed that Pakistan army violated ceasefire on the LoC in Akhnoor sector at 4 am, which was strongly retaliated by the Indian side, leading to exchange of firing and heavy losses on Pakistan side. Pakistan army again violated ceasefire at 9 pm today, which was again returned by the Indian side.
Meanwhile, the students of Government Primary School were shifted to safer places as preventive measure when Pakistan resorted to unprovoked firing along the International Border in Kanachak sector.
The school students and villagers had close shave at Gol Pattan area of Kanachak sector at Indo-Pak International Border, when Pakistani Rangers violated ceasefire at around 10 am.
The firing continued till 12.30 pm while BSF also retaliated.
”The school students of Primary School of forward area Gol Pattan area were shifted to safer places in BSF’s Bunker Vehicle,” reports said.
Meanwhile, in view of continued ceasefire violations by Pakistan army, the Indian Army will shortly deploy recently acquired Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles along the LoC with Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir.
“The Spike missiles can be used in the bunker buster mode,” official sources told the Excelsior.
They said the Indian Army has received 240 Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles and their 12 launchers from Israel on fast track mode to meet emergency requirements especially along the LoC with Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir where ceasefire violations, infiltration attempts etc have increased following Balakote air raids by India on February 24 and scrapping of special Constitutional provisions of Jammu and Kashmir and its bifurcation into two Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh on August 5 this year.
The missiles which are supposed to be mainly used for anti-tank operations can also be quite helpful for destroying hardened shelters or bunkers in which the militants might be hiding.
Indian Army had recently targeted camps and launch pads of the militants along the Line of Control about a month ago in which number of militants and Pakistan army personnel were killed.
According to sources, Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles can also be used during night and can strike the target accurately.
While 210 Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles with 12 launchers have been received by the Indian Army for Northern Command headquartered at Udhampur, sources said the Army could seek more such launchers and missiles shortly for deployment on the LoC as it sees no early de-escalation of tension with Pakistan in view of the Central Government decisions on Jammu and Kashmir, which have upset and isolated the neighbour which was now using ceasefire violations and trying to push the militants into this side for causing disturbances.
Faced with increased presence of militants including hardcore cadre of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militant outfits at launching pads close to the LoC with full backing of Pakistan army in twin border districts of Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu region and Baramulla and Kupwara in Kashmir, the Indian troops have been taking series of measures to thwart intrusions.
“During past couple of months, Indian Army has already foiled series of infiltration attempts by heavily armed militants on the LoC,” sources said, adding that apart from deployment of Spike Anti-Tank Guided Missiles and launchers, the Army has also taken number of other measures to ensure that Pakistan’s designs to push militants in Jammu and Kashmir to step-up militancy don’t succeed.