Retribution will be heavy for this cowardly act, the Army said in a statement.
Srinagar/Jammu: In a cross-LoC attack by suspected Pakistani terrorists, three Indian soldiers were today killed, with body of one of them being mutilated in second such incident in less than a month, triggering outrage in this country.
The ambush on army patrol took place in Machhil sector of Kashmir, following which the Indian army vowed heavy "retribution".
"A counter-infiltration patrol party of Indian army was ambushed by terrorists ahead of the fencing along LoC in forest belt in Machhil sector in Kupwara district today," a senior Army officer said.
Three soldiers were killed in the attack, he said, adding the body of one of them was mutilated.
The three slain soldiers were : 25-year-old Prabhu Singh of Khir Jamkhas village in Shergarh tehsil of Rajasthan, 31- year-old K Kushwah of Daddupur, Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh and 25-year-old Shashank K Singh of Nasirudinpur in Mohamadabad tehsil of Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh. Body of Prabhu Singh was mutilated, army sources said.
Earlier, Army's Northern Command spokesman tweeted, "3 soldiers killed in action on LC (Line of Control) in Machhal. Body of one soldier mutilated." He said the "retribution will be heavy for this cowardly act."
A Defence spokesman said heavy cross-Line of Control shelling was going on at four places in Machhil sector from 3.30 pm.
"Around 1530 hour, heavy cross-LoC shelling has started from both sides at Dana Machhil, Ashni, Ringsar and Ringsar Payeen in Machhil sector of Kupwara district," he said. He did not give any further details.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar was briefed by Vice Chief of Army Lt Gen Bipin Rawat on the killing of three soldiers. Defence Ministry sources said Lt Gen Rawat briefed the Minister in detail.
This is the second such incident of mutilation of the body of an Indian soldier in the same sector since October 28.
On that day, terrorists, aided by the cover fire by Pakistani Army, had crossed the Line of Control and killed 30-year-old Sepoy Mandeep Singh and mutilated his body in the Macchil sector. One attacker was killed in that incident.
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.
Seventeen soldiers have died in increased ceasefire violations by Pakistan since the surgical strikes. In September, Indian soldiers crossed over the Line of Control and destroyed terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir. The strikes were seen as India's response to the Uri attack in which 19 soldiers were killed by terrorists from Pakistan.