Five persons, including a BSF jawan, were killed on Friday when Pakistan Rangers targeted civilian areas and Border Posts with mortars along the International Border (IB) in the Jammu district.
Among the killed was a couple of Chandu Chak village on whose house mortars fired from across the IB had landed. They have been identified as Tarsem Lal and his wife Manjeet.
Reports said that an Assistant Sub-Inspector of BSF also suffered a splinter injury at Pittal BoP and he has been admitted to a hospital.
At least 12 civilians were injured in the Arnia sector and 10 of them with serious injuries have been admitted in the government medical college in Jammu. Several cattleheads have also perished as they received splinter injuries.
Jammu’s Additional District Magistrate Arun Manhas confirmed that four civilians have been killed. Two of them in Chandu Chak and two in Treva village of Arnia sector of Jammu. Manhas was personally visiting the affected villages to supervise relief operations.
People were being evacuated to safe places by the J-K Police in bulletproof vehicles.
This is the third day of shelling and firing by Pakistani troops along the IB in Jammu frontier and comes ahead of Prime Minister Narendera Modi’s visit to Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday.
Pakistan Rangers shelled areas in Ranbirsingh Pura, Bishnah and Arnia sectors of Jammu by resorting to heavy mortar shelling and firing since 1.30 am.
BSF spokesman identified the martyred Jawan as 27-year-old Sita Ram Upadhyaya of Paaliganj village in Giridih district of Jharkhand. He was in the 192 battalion of BSF and suffered head injury while facing Pakistan attack at the Jabbowal picket at about 1.30 am.
Sita Ram is second BSF jawan killed in past three days due to exchange of fire with Pakistan Rangers in the Jammu frontier.
Sita Ram was brought dead to the Jammu Medical College at 3.20 am. Wreath laying ceremony of the martyred jawan was attended by a minister Sat Sharma and senior BSF and civil officers.
The injured civilians have been identified as Raman Kumar Gupta (55), 60-year-old Payara Lal of Ranbirsinghpura, Farooq Din of Jora Farm and Harbans Lal of Trewa area.
As a precautionary measure, all schools within 5 km radius of the IB have been closed.
Angry residents protested by blocking the RS Pura road along with dead bodies of the couple killed in fresh cross border firing.
They alleged that the government agencies failed to rescue the persons injured in the shelling and they were rushed in tractor trolleys to the hospital by the locals. The bodies were brought back by villagers in tractor trolleys as no ambulance was provided for this purpose.
However, there was a lull in the Kathua and Samba districts. On Thursday, a BSF jawan was among two persons injured when Pakistan Rangers opened fire and lobbed mortars at over 15 border outposts (BOPs) and some civilian areas along the International Border in Samba and Kathua districts of Jammu and Kashmir.
On 15 May, a 28-year-old BSF jawan was killed after Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire by opening fire on forward posts to help infiltrators cross the International Border in Samba sector. Troops have foiled four infiltration bids along the IB since May 12.
On the other hand, Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) claimed that four members of the family of Noor Hussain in village Khanoor of Sialkot sector of Pakistan were killed and ten others injured due to firing by the BSF.
Firing was continuing in Pukhlian, Cahprar, Harpal, Charwah and Shakargarh Sectors, the ISPR said.