An Indian porter have been suspected to have been severed by Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT) and taken away the head. He was among two civilians killed along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district on Friday, officials have said.
According to the officials, this is the first time that any civilian has been beheaded by the BAT, which comprises Pakistani army regulars and terrorists, though similar incidents involving security personnel have taken place in the past.
The body of Mohammad Aslam, 28, was decapitated and his head was missing, a senior police officer said.
On the killings by Pakistan, Army chief General MM Naravane said on Saturday that professional armies never resort to “barbaric” acts and they “will deal appropriately with such situations in a military manner”.
A defence spokesman had earlier said that Aslam and Altaf Hussain, 23, both residents of Kassalian village in Gulpur sector, were killed and three others were injured after being hit by a mortar shell when Pakistani Army targeted a group of porters who were carrying logistics for the troops in a forward area close the LoC on Friday.
However, officials said on Saturday that the head of one of the porters was missing and is believed to have been taken away by the BAT.
“The body of Aslam was headless when handed over to police for completion of legal formalities. The bodies of both the porters were handed over to their families and their last rites were conducted in their village on Friday evening,” said the police officer, asking not to be named.
He said the injured porters — Mohamamd Saleem, 24, Mohammad Showka, 28, and Nawaz Ahmad, 35 — are being treated at a hospital and their condition is “stable”.
“We will deal appropriately with such situations in a military manner,” General Naravane said when asked about the incident at a press conference in Delhi ahead of Army Day.
He said the Indian Army conducts itself in the most professional and ethical manner including on the LoC. “Professional armies never resort to barbaric acts,” he said.
Earlier, ssserting that there would be no compromise with the nation’s security and sovereignty, new Chief of Army Staff, Gen Manoj Mukund Narvane today said the Indian Army would take appropriate action if it got an order from Parliament to reclaim Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK).
“There is a parliamentary resolution that entire Jammu and Kashmir is a part of India. If Parliament wants that area (PoK) should also be ours…if we get any direction, we will definitely take appropriate action,” he said at a press conference.
(With PTI inputs)