Three BSF jawans were injured after smugglers from Pakistani side opened fire on a vehicle carrying BSF jawans for change of duties for night shift at an area in Daoke border outpost near Bhikhiwind at about 1 am Saturday, BSF said on Saturday.
Officiating Deputy Inspector General BSF (Amritsar sector) I P Bhatia during a press conference at Khasa headquarters of BSF in Amritsar district said it appeared a “retaliatory action” by the Pakistani smugglers after BSF recently gunned down three Pakistani smugglers and seized heroin.
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Bhatia, however, gave Pakistani Rangers a clean chit and said Rangers had “no connivance” in the case. “Rangers are understaffed and lackadaisical in performing their duties. They have no connivance in the case,” Bhatia said. He, meanwhile, added that a commandant level flag meeting with Rangers was scheduled for the day on the issue.
Among the injured jawans, constable Rakesh Kumar sustained a bullet injury in the thigh. The other two, constables Nagendra Kumar and Mahender Boro, sustained splinter injuries on the backs.
Bhatia said that the Tata 407 vehicles carrying the jawans came under fire from the smugglers from across the border who took advantage of dark and standing wheat crop. Bhatia said AK-47 rifle was used by the smugglers to open fire and more than a dozen of empty shells had been recovered.
The vehicle was being driven by Mahender Boro, BSF said. Claimed Mahendra Boro, who was rushed to Guru Nanak Dev Hospital in Amritsar, along with the other two, “I kept on driving till the base camp after the vehicle came under attack.”
“We quickly ducked and laid flat in the vehicle amid firing from Pakistani side,” said Rakesh Kumar. The condition of all the three jawans was stable.
Meanwhile, Bhatia said that BSF jawans on duty also opened fire in retaliation. BSF Punjab Frontier Inspector General Anil Paliwal, along with BSG DIG RPS Jaswal visited the trio in the hospital and later also went to the spot where the incident was said to have occurred.