Two people were injured as Pakistani Rangers and their regular troops, after a brief lull of nearly 24 hours, re-started unprovoked mortar shelling and small arms fire along the international border in Kanachak and Pargwal sectors in Jammu, besides Line of Control in Nowshera area of Rajouri district on Sunday evening.
The injured have been identified as Ram Dass and Gopal Dass, both brothers. They sustained splinter injuries following mortar shelling which started in Kanachak area around 9.30 pm. Both were rushed to the hospital.
BSF sources confirmed shelling in Ganjansoo, Golepattan, New Kanachak and Old Kanachak areas, besides Pargwal, saying they few mortar shells were fired from across the border. In the morning, a few rounds/shells were also fired by Rangers in Arnia area.
Along rest of the international border from Kanachak to R S Pura, Arnia, Ramgarh, Samba and Kathua, a tenuous calm prevailed since Saturday evening.
Pakistani troops also restarted mortar shelling in Nowshera started around 5 pm and in next two hours, its intensity increased in Jhangar, Laam, Kalsiyan and Kalal areas. The Indian troops were retaliating and the exchange of fire between the two sides was continuing till reports last came in.
Meanwhile, death toll in Saturday exchange of fire along the border has risen to five as one more army personnel succumbed to injuries at the hospital. The deceased soldier has been identified as Signalman Chandan Kumar Rai, 25, of village Nadesar in Uttar Pradesh’s Chandauli district. He is survived by his father Satya Prakash Rai.
With this, the number of people killed on Indian side during the current month has risen to 12 including three army men, three BSF personnel and six civilians and injuries to nearly 50 others. Of them, ten have died during the last four days.
The toll has been almost equal to the number of causalities on the Indian side during entire 2017 when nearly a dozen people including security force personnel were killed and less than three dozen injured on the entire border from Kathua to Poonch district.
Most of the villages along the international border continue to bear a deserted look as the almost entire population had shifted to safer places in view of escalation along the border during the past four days. Sources said that most of the people had shifted to their relatives.