Pak troops sneak-in on LoC, kill two soldiers; mutilate bodies

Martyrs Paramjit Singh and Prem Sagar (Left) while family of Paramjit mourns his martyrdom at Tarn Taran in Punjab on Monday.
Martyrs Paramjit Singh and Prem Sagar (Left) while family of Paramjit mourns his martyrdom at Tarn Taran in Punjab on Monday.

Sanjeev Pargal

JAMMU, May 1: Pakistani Special Forces, known by the name of Border Action Teams (BATs) today carried out most dastardly and cruel act after sneaking about 400 to 500 meters inside the Indian territory across the border fencing along Line of Control (LoC) in Nangi Tekri area of Krishna Ghati sector in Poonch district and martyred two soldiers of Army and BSF.
Army vowed retaliation saying it will hit back and hit back very strongly to give “appropriate and adequate” response to most cowardly acted committed by Pakistani troops. The BAT attack by Pakistan Special Forces came just a day after Pakistan army chief Qawar Javed Bajwa visited LoC in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) including the areas across twin border districts of Rajouri and Poonch.
Soon after the report of martyrdom of two soldiers and mutilation of their bodies came, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley and National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval spoke to Army and BSF officers to review situation prevailing along the borders with Pakistan.
Singh also reviewed overall security situation of Jammu and Kashmir with top security and Home Ministry officials.
Official sources told the Excelsior that Army and BSF have been given free hand to teach Pakistan army a lesson for their dastardly act of killing the Army and BSF soldiers and mutilating their bodies. Army has vowed to retaliate saying it will take strong action against Pakistani troops for their unsoldierly act.
Head Constable of BSF Prem Sagar, a resident of Tokampur, Deoria in Uttar Pradesh and Naib Subedar Paramjeet Singh of 22 Sikh attained martyrdom in the BAT attack while Rajinder Singh, a BSF constable, was injured. The injured jawan has been hospitalized and was responding to the treatment.
Sources said the Pakistani Special Forces team sneaked 400 to 500 meters inside the LoC at Nangi Tekri in Krishna Ghati sector of the LoC in Poonch district this morning under the cover of rocket launchers and automatic weapons firing from Pakistan side.
The attack was carried out by the Border Action Team (BAT), which comprised the Special Forces. The BAT team had set up an ambush to target the patrol party of the Indian soldiers while the Pakistan army engaged two Indian Forward Defence Locations (FDL) with rockets and mortar bombs.
“It was a pre-planned operation of the Pakistan army. They had pushed in BAT teams over 400 meters deep inside Indian territory and set up ambushes for a long period to carry out the attack,” sources said.
“The Pakistani army posts attacked two FDL posts with rockets and mortar bombs at 8.30 am and engaged them,” sources said.
“Their target was a 7 to 8-member patrol party, which had come out of the post,” sources said but added that since the posts were engaged, the patrol party men ran here and there. Two members of the patrol party, who were left behind, were attacked by the BAT team and killed. Their bodies were badly mutilated.
PTI quoted an Army official as saying that bodies of two soldiers had been beheaded.
There were reports that the Indian Army patrol, whose two members were beheaded by Pakistani special forces today, might just have walked into a death trap laid by the enemy, official sources said.
The incident in Krishna Ghati sector along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir occurred when a joint team of the Army and BSF had gone to check the veracity of an intelligence report that landmines had been planted by Pakistani troops on the Indian side.
As they were looking for landmines, the patrol was taken by surprise by Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT) which had laid an ambush over 250 metres deep inside the Indian territory.
While the Pakistani troops attacked two forward posts with rockets and mortar bombs, the BAT personnel lay in wait for their targets. The Indian Army patrol too came under fusillade of gunfire, resulting in the death of two soldiers.
The BAT personnel quickly moved in and beheaded two fallen soldiers, official sources said in New Delhi.
It was still not known if landmines had indeed been planted in the area.
K K Sharma, the Director General of BSF, one of whose personnel was killed in the attack and decapitated, met Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi and briefed him on the incident.
As per reports, at 8.30 am, Pakistani army’s 647 Mujahid Battalion targeted India’s forward post ‘Kirpan’ from its post ‘Pimple’ in Krishna Ghati sector. It was followed by attack on another forward post in the same area.
“They attacked with rockets a forward BSF post (which lies) ahead of the fencing and opened heavy fire from automatic weapons. They violated the ceasefire,” sources said.
“It was an attack directly hitting a post (listening post)”, they added.
The BAT is specifically employed for trans-LoC action.
In Pakistan, the SSG (Special Services Group) formed the core of BAT. Its primary task is to dominate the LoC by carrying out disruptive actions in the form of surreptitious raids.
There have been several BAT attacks in the past in which jawans have been beheaded or their bodies mutilated.
Sources said bodies of the two martyr soldiers have been shifted to their headquarters and will be flown to their native towns tomorrow morning with full military honours.
Sources pointed out that the forward post targeted by Pakistani Special Forces was about 400 meters ahead of border fencing and the area was filled with sense bushes and trees, where visibility is confined to only few meters. Therefore, they said, the security personnel couldn’t assess movement of the troops immediately and were trapped. However, some of the jawans retaliated but by then the BAT members had managed to retreat.
However, this is not the first time when Pakistani troops have mutilated bodies of the Indian soldiers.
On October 28, 2016, militants attacked a post and killed an Indian Army soldier and mutilated his body close to the Line of Control (LoC) in the Machil sector.
In January 2013, Lance Naik Hemraj was killed and his body mutilated by a BAT. It also beheaded Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh. Constable Rajinder Singh of the BSF battalion suffered injuries in the attack.
In June 2008, a soldier of the 2/8 Gorkha Rifles lost his way and was captured by a Pakistani Border Action Team (BAT) in Kel sector. His body was found beheaded after a few days.
During the 1999 Kargil conflict, Captain Saurabh Kalia was tortured by his Pakistani captors who later handed over his mutilated body to India.
In February, 2000, terrorist Ilyas Kashmiri had led a raid on the Indian Army’s ‘Ashok Listening Post’ in the Nowshera sector to kill seven Indian soldiers.
Even then, Kashmiri had taken back to Pakistan the head of a 24-year-old Indian jawan, Bhausaheb Maruti Talekar of the 17 Maratha Light Infantry.
In April this year, there were seven ceasefire violations by the Pakistani troops along the LOC in Poonch and Rajouri sectors of Jammu and Kashmir.
On April 19, the Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire along the LoC in Poonch sector.
Two days prior to that, the Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire by firing and shelling mortars on forward posts in Nowshera sector along the LoC in Rajouri district, according to Indian army officials.
They had broken the ceasefire in the same sector on April 8, in Poonch district on April 5, in Bhimbher Gali (BG) sector on April 4 and twice on April 3 in Balakote and (Digwar) Poonch sectors.
In Digwar sector of Poonch, a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO), Naib Subedar S Sanayaima Som, was killed in an Improvise Explosive Sevice (IED) blast along the LoC in Poonch sector on April 1.
There were four violations of the ceasefire along the LoC in Poonch in March.
On March 9, Army jawan Deepak Jagannath Ghadge was killed when Pakistani soldiers initiated indiscriminate and unprovoked firing along the LoC in Poonch.
In 2016, there were 228 instances of ceasefire violation along the LoC, while there were 221 instances of ceasefire violation along the International Border (IB).


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