TWO SOLDIERS, Naik Sawant Sandip Raghunath (29) and Rifleman Arjun Thapa Magar (25), were killed in an encounter with some “infiltrators” during a cordon-and-search operation in Nowshera on Tuesday night.
A Defence Ministry spokesperson, Lt Colonel Devender Anand, said the infiltrators were intercepted in Khari Thrayat forest when they were trying to sneak into India from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
“In the intervening night of December 31 and January 1, a contact was established with infiltrators in a forest in Nowshera sector. The heavily armed terrorists retaliated by fire. In the ensuing exchange of fire, two soldiers of the Indian Army were critically injured and later succumbed to their injuries… The operation is in progress,” he said in a statement.
Sawant, a resident of Munde village in Karhad tehsil of Satara district in Maharashtra, is survived by his wife, Smita Sawant. Magar was from Rip village in Gorkha district of Nepal, and is survived by his wife, Sarita Thapa Magar.
“Naik Raghunath and Rifleman Magar were brave, highly motivated and sincere soldiers. The nation will always remain indebted to them for the supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty,” Lt Col Anand said.
Officials said the Army had been carrying out a cordon-and-search operation in forests around Manawar Tawi in Nowshera’s Kalal area since Tuesday morning following information about the movement of suspected terrorists.
Reinforcements have been rushed to the area and a massive operation is on to track down the terrorists, they said.