At least 18 terrorists were reportedly killed along with 16 Pakistani soldiers as the Indian Army launched artillery strikes on terrorist camps in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir during the intervening night of October 19 and 20.
The figures were revealed after Indian security agencies assessed the impact of the Indian Army’s artillery assault on terror launch pads in Neelam valley, opposite the Tangdhar sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Kupwara district, according to a report in Hindustan Times.
However, the Army has not confirmed the number of dead.
As per the report, all the terror launch pads housing Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and other jihadists were destroyed in the retaliatory strikes after Pakistan carried out attacks firing at Indian posts and tried to infiltrate terrorists.
Following the ceasefire violation by Pakistan and Indian Army’s successful retaliation, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Army Chief General Bipin Rawat and congratulated the latter on the resolute action.
On Sunday, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat had said that at least 10 Pakistani soldiers, as well as a similar or higher number of terrorists, were killed in the artillery strikes by the Army.
The Army had used artillery guns to target the terrorist camps in which three of them were destroyed.
“On the basis of reports that we have been getting, 6-10 Pakistani soldiers have been killed, 3 camps have been destroyed. A similar number of terrorists have also been killed… Confirmed reports tell that casualties to terrorists are more than the information we have,” General Bipin Rawat told reporters.
The Army Chief said that during the intervening night of October 19-20, an attempt was made in the Tangdhar sector to infiltrate terrorists to which the Indian forces retaliated. Pakistan had carried out attack firing at Indian posts, but before they could attempt the infiltration, the Army targeted the terror camps across the border.
Two Indian soldiers and a civilian were killed in the unprovoked ceasefire violation in Tangdhar sector of Kupwara in Jammu and Kashmir on the intervening night of October 19-20. Three other civilians were also injured.
The Army Chief said that the Indian force had received inputs on terrorists advancing towards the camps in the forward areas. “In the last one month, we have seen repeated attempts from different sectors to infiltrate terrorists,” he said.
Rawat said that while Jammu and Kashmir is returning to normalcy, some forces are working from within India and outside in Pakistan and PoK trying to disrupt peace in the Valley.
Meanwhile, Pakistan has rejected India’s claim over attack on terror launchpads along the Line of Control. On Sunday, Pakistan government in Islamabad summoned Indian chargé d’affaires Gaurav Ahluwalia and refuted attack on any launchpad in LoC area by the Indian Army.
Pakistan’s foreign office countered India’s claim on the very next day of the announcement, stating that India’s unprovoked ceasefire violations have targeted civilian populations.
Mohammad Faisal Director-General of SA and SAARC condemned the “unprovoked ceasefire violations by the Indian forces” along the LoC on the intervening night of October 19 and 20.
He told the Indian envoy that five civilians had died, while six others, including women and children, sustained serious injuries.
The foreign official alleged that the Indian forces have been continuously targeting the civilian populated area with artillery fire, heavy calibre mortars and automatic weapons.
Till October 10 this year, Pakistan has violated ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir for 2,310 times. As per the Army, 147 terrorists have been killed till October 10 in various operations in the hinterland and the LoC.