A BSF constable was killed in the early hours of Friday after Pakistani troops resorted to unprovoked mortar shelling and small arms fire along the international border in Jammu region. Identifying the deceased as Brijendra Bahadur Singh (32), official sources said he took a bullet in the abdomen and later succumbed to the injury.
The sources said the shelling and firing from across the border started in Arnia sector around 12.30 am. The firing soon spread to three BSF outposts, S M Base, Budwar and Nikkowal, they added. The shelling triggered panic in various villages in Arnia sector as some of the mortar shells fell in civilian areas, damaging several homes.
Pakistani Rangers also fired two mortar shells in the neighbouring R S Pura sector, sources said.
IG, BSF, Ram Awtar said the constable was evacuated after he was injured and rushed to the hospital, but he succumbed. Attributing the Pakistani shelling to growing frustration over its failure to push in armed terrorists, he said BSF retaliated strongly and appropriately. “The BSF will give a suitable reply to Pakistan in the coming days,’’ he said, adding that the deceased constable’s cremation will take place on Saturday at his native village, Vidya Bhawan Narayanpur, in Ballia district of Uttar Pradesh. Deputy CM Dr Nirmal Singh, who reached the BSF headquarters at Palour to pay tributes to the constable, described the Pakistani shelling on civilian areas an “act of cowardice’’.