Srinagar/New Delhi: Pakistani troops sneaked about 250 meters into the Indian side of the LoC in J&K on Monday and mutilated the bodies of two Indian jawans after they were killed, sparking widespread outrage and prompting an Army offensive to avenge the barbarism. Defence sources said that the Pakistan Army has suffered “considerable losses” in India’s retaliatory fire.
India’s Army said the bodies of naib subedar Paramjit Singh and BSF head constable Prem Sagar were mutilated. However, defence sources said they were beheaded. BSF constable Rajinder Singh was also injured in the attack carried out by Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT) comprising soldiers of the Pakistani special forces under cover of heavy mortar fire in the Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch.
Defence minister Arun Jaitley condemned the “reprehensible and an inhuman act.” “Such acts don’t take place even during war. It is an extreme form of barbarism. The whole country has full faith in our armed forces, which will react appropriately. The sacrifice of these soldiers will not go in vain”, he said.
In response to the “despicable act”, the Indian Army vowed an “appropriate” response even as Army chief Bipin Rawat rushed to Srinagar. At about 8:40 am, even as the Pakistan Army attacked two Indian forward defence locations with rockets and mortars, the BAT led an ambush on an eight-member joint patrol party of the Army and the BSF. According to Indian Army sources, it was a “pre-planned operation of the Pakistan Army” as part of its latest violation of the November 2003 ceasefire agreement.
Coming under attack, the patrol party broke up to take positions for a counter-attack “Two members, who were left behind, were attacked by BAT soldiers killed. Their bodies were badly mutilated,” officials said.
It was followed by an attack on another forward post in the same area leading to strong retaliation by Indian troops. On Sunday, Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa had visited some areas along the LoC and promised support to Kashmiris.
Meanwhile, the Pakistani Army’s public relations arm denied any BAT action in the Krishna Ghati sector. Pakistan’s foreign office spokesman M. Nafees Zakaria also tweeted, “Pakistan Army did not commit any ceasefire violation as alleged by India.”
In Delhi, the government and various political parties condemned the mutilating of the Indian soldiers with BJP MP R.K. Singh who is a former Union home secretary asking for a tit-for-tat response. He said. “Pakistan understands only one language and, therefore, we need to kill more Pakistani soldiers and give them the same treatment.”
In November 2016 also, the Pakistani Army was accused of mutilating the body of one of the three soldiers after they were killed in Macheal sector along the LoC in Kupwara district.